Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Pasta with Sun Dried Tomato, Mushrooms, Spinach, and Goat Cheese

Keeping with the alarmingly irregular rate at which I post blogs, it's been 6 months since I posted anything! So I guess the moral of the story is that I will post things when it feels good, and most of those times are spontaneous and inspired by the simple recipes that yet require a good amount of cooking sensibility.

I'm at the comfortable point where I know what I like, and I know which of those things go well together. I cannot comfortably not cook for much more than a week, which is about the same amount of time I can swear off wine. Anyways - less words, more pictures.

It usually always starts with garlic, in my world. I'd have the balls to say garlic is my religion, but until I've mastered making this, I don't feel comfortable making such a statement. Ignore the hot sauce hiding back there, as I unfortunately could not justify using it in this recipe. :-(

Once upon a time, it was said that I couldn't...wouldn't...befriend mushrooms. I've done a lot of crazy shit in my life, yet this may be the only true regret I have.

You already spied these I'm sure. Congratulations, but here they are again anyways.

They always look like little soldiers to me, ready to go onward into some delicious battle.

What I did was take the oil from the sun dried tomato jar, mixed it with lemon olive oil, and used that for my oil. Seriously, nothing fancy here. I add that to a very warm skillet and let it percolate and whatever else it wants to do, so long as it doesn't burn the place down.

Garlic is the answer to most things. I want to mention that at this point I add salt, (a lot of) black pepper, and more lemon oil. The garlic just needs around 3 minutes to start getting golden over medium heat. I should also mention that I like to make sure that the base here is quite strong to the taste, because if you're going to eventually put this onto something else, you don't want to lose the flavors. Also because I like strong flavored non-kimchee things.

 Does this need an explanation? If so, I put sliced mushrooms and sun dried tomatoes in with the toasted garlic and now garlic infused oil. I add the crushed reds at this point also. The reason why I wait to add them is because spice builds as it heats. For a recipe this fast, you could add them at the beginning with no repercussions. For a longer cooking recipe, I wouldn't add any kind of peppers too soon.  Do it too soon though anyways, because learning from your own mistakes and not vicariously through others mistakes is honestly better. PS - I cook all this for 5-7 minutes so the mushroom can do what they do best, which is sop up a stupefying amount of fat and flavor.

See in my mind, this picture lacks spinach. I could have easily added a cup more, because spinach wilts like crazy under heat, and quickly. I only kept this amount on the heat for maybe 2 minutes tops, and got this:

It's a shame it doesn't last longer. Hallucinatory green is my favorite color.

Pasta doesn't grow on trees. In fact, I was actually cooking it the whole time (10 minutes) I was doing the other stuff I posted above. All you do is find a big bowl, put the pasta inside of it (multi-colored Penne by Barilla, because I had a coupon for it and I'm a cheap asshole), and put that impossibly delectable thing you just made into the skillet on top of that. I also crumbled goat cheese on top of it, because goat cheese is really fucking delicious. I never understood people who don't like goat cheese. "It's too tangy!" are words that I've heard. Vegans have a better excuse than that.


Yes, I did.