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This is one of those great “what do I have in the fridge meals.” For the past week, I’ve been eating this killer quesadilla. But for some reason (health?), I decided to not re-stock my cheese drawer. Result = no Mexican shredded cheese for the quesadilla. Also, no tortillas. And no black beans because for some reason (deliciousness and elitism), I decided I was going fill my pantry with dry beans.

So I did what any normal person would do: I converted the quesadilla to a pasta dish, classed it up a bit, and ate my face stupid.

One-pan tomato and artichoke pasta 1

You can do this in 30-minutes flat. Or, if you are one of those classy snobs with a stove that boils water in under 15 minutes, 20-minutes flat. The key to this one is really letting the onions caramelize and giving the tomatoes time absorb all the delicious onion and garlic and olive oil.

One-pan tomato and artichoke pasta 2

Now before I throw this recipe at you, let’s have a quick analysis of whole wheat pasta.

Whole wheat pasta is not created equal. In fact, some brands are totally delicious and some are absolute crap. It’s like some genius decided to make the pasta taste healthy instead of delicious. You don’t have to convince me! It says whole wheat on the box! I’m talking to you, Barilla.

I’ve tried a lot of different brands over the years, and I’ve determined the absolute best is the generic Harris Teeter organics line. (For those of you outside the Southeast, this is a local grocery store chain.)

Since I lived in New York City for a few months, and I’m moving back up in a few months, I needed an alternative. Enter: Whole Foods 365 Brand. Delicious. Not mind-blowing like HT, but delicious all the same.

Conclusion: Go for the cheap generic brands because they couldn’t care less about flavor, they just care about price. No fancy ingredients, no special type of wheat, just the cheapest of the cheap. Perfect.

One-pan Tomato and Artichoke Pasta 3

 

One-Pan Tomato, Artichoke and Feta Pasta

serves 4

4 servings whole wheat pasta

1 1/2  tbsp. olive oil

1 yellow onion, chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 pint grape tomatoes, quartered

3/4 cup artichoke hearts*

1/4-1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper, depending on your spice preference

salt and pepper to taste

2 oz spinach (3-4 handfuls), chopped

1/3 cup crumbled feta

Prepare pasta as directed.

While pasta is cooking, heat olive oil in large pan over medium heat. Add onions. Let onions just begin to brown, about 5-7 minutes. Lower heat to medium-low, add garlic, tomatoes, artichoke, crushed red pepper, salt and pepper. Sautee 3-5 minutes, until the tomatoes soften. Add the spinach and sautee another minute.

Add the pasta and feta, mix and serve.

*I used the Kirkland Signature marinated artichoke hearts – incredible – so if yours are not marinated, add a little extra olive oil to the pan when you add the artichokes

 

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