Pasta is a staple for Italy but is also loved and appreciated by rest of the world. Broadly speaking , pastas fall under two main categories. Dried and Fresh. Further segregated into long , short, minute, etc etc. Depending on the region, preparation of the dish varies and so does the ingredients. Each region in Italy has its own sauce .. Pesto , Bolognese, Arabiatta, Carbonara, etc etc are few names from the long list … Today we make Verdi Pasta
Verdi means Greens in the Italian. Readers who are regular on my blog know about my love for greens and also of my family’s aversion toward it. This recipe makes everyone happy at home. I am at peace about they are eating leafy greens and they are glad to see cheese , pasta and funky green colour on their plate. It’s a win-win situation.
Spaghetti works best with the recipe. I used mini penne to save a round to the market. If you are not lazy like me and/or have spaghetti in your pantry, please use spaghetti. It’s fun slurping the sauce.
1. Work on medium to low flame.
2. Don’t brown any ingredients. It’s not biryani, it’s pasta !!
2 large bunch of Spinach
350 gms Spaghetti / or any other pasta
1/2 cup grated cheese ( I used cheddar)
1 medium sized Onions , finely chopped
5 Garlic Cloves, minced
2 Tbsp Maida / All purpose Flour / Whole Wheat Flour ( I used the later)
2 cups of Milk
2 Green Chillies , finely chopped
2 TSP Freshly ground Pepper
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
2 Tbsp Butter
Salt to taste
1. Bring lot of water to boil for pasta and spinach. I use the same water to achieve both the task.
2. Wash, drain and blanch spinach in the water we kept to cook pasta. Keep blanched spinach aside to cool.
2. In the same boiling water add a tad bit of salt and oil (so that pasta doesn’t stick) , add your pasta of choice to cook.
3. While your spinach is cooling down and your pasta is boiling away , we start with our sauce. Heat a heavy bottom pan, add oil and butter. In hot oil and butter , add onions, green chillies and garlic. Remember to work on medium to low flame only. Saute for a minute or two. Do not brown.
4. Add the flour and saute for couple of minutes. We don’t have to brown it. Just cooking to remove any rawness in the flour. Add 2 cups of milk to this and stir so every is well blended. Let it cook for some time. It will start to thicken.
5. Add pepper and cheese when the sauce starts thicken. This entire process from step 3 to 5 should take about 10 mins. Nothing more than that. Let the cheese melt into the sauce. If you feel it’s become too thick, add pasta water. This also enhances the taste.
7. Add the pasta straight from the boiling water using a strainer spoon into the sauce. This is how most of the pastas are cooked. Don’t drain and leave the pasta to stick to each other. Mix well so pasta is coated with our white sauce.
Serve hot with freshly baked Garlic Bread