Work has been more hectic than usual lately so I was trying to brainstorm ways to be more efficient when a light bulb went off and I realized that I could save a bunch of time if I started running home from work a few times a week! Not only do I get a great workout in, but the jog home only takes 10 minutes longer than my usual 45 minute commute. Why didn’t I think of this earlier?!? I’m taking the shortest route home right now, but hopefully will start gaining enough endurance to mix my things up eventually. It’s funny, but I don’t usually have much of an appetite after I run…until the next day that is, when I become completely ravaneous and end up snacking all day. Anyway, one night after my run I decided to get some carbs ready in anticipation of my need to recharge the next day and whipped up this yummy pasta dish.
This spaghetti has a bit of a Greek twist because I made a sauce of pureed spinach, onions, garlic, lemon juice, and oregano. I mixed in some tomato paste to give it some depth and a bit of cottage cheese to add some richness without the heaviness of cream a la Cara. The shrimp and feta rounded out the dish nicely, although next time I may also add in some chopped roasted red peppers!
Spinach Sauce Pasta with Shrimp
1 pound whole wheat spaghetti
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium red onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound fresh baby spinach
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1/2 cup 2% cottage cheese
2 teaspoons dried oregano
Juice of one lemon
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
To prepare the pasta, cook spaghetti according to package directions. Drain the pasta in a colander, return it to the pot, and keep warm.
Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Add onion and sauté 5 to 7 minutes or under tender; add garlic and sauté one additional minute. Place onion mixture in a food processor and wipe the pan clean with a damp cloth. Add half the fresh spinach to the cleaned pan and place a lid on top. Heat for 4 to 6 minutes or until wilted. Add the remaining half of the fresh spinach to the pan; stir well and repeat, cooking spinach 4 to 6 additional minutes or until wilted. Place spinach in the food processor with the onion; add in tomato paste, cottage cheese, oregano, lemon juice, and salt and pulse until smooth.
Place shrimp and spinach sauce into a large nonstick skillet and cook on medium high heat for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring frequently, or until shrimp are cooked through and opaque. Add sauce to the pasta and mix well. Scoop evenly into 6 bowls and garnish with crumbled feta cheese. Makes 6 servings.
Nutrition: 430 calories, 9.6g fat, 10.6g fiber, 30.7g protein per serving
Cost: $1.75 per serving