That color, though!!!
It’s either filling your heart full of warm, squishy green love feelings or striking terror into every fiber of your being.
You can guess which I am.
If you’re more in the latter camp…don’t run!!
I happen to live in a house of green food skeptics who DEVOURED this pasta, including the extremely picky five year old who, not infrequently, turns her nose up at chocolate cake. She ate this. Every bite. (And then I fainted in disbelief.) Sure, I had to convince her that she’d had it before and absolutely loved it, which is zero percent true, BUT IT WORKED. Feeling so much mom pride on that one.
In addition to being gloriously green, bright, fresh, and chock full of things we know we should be eating more of, another selling point of this recipe is that it could not be easier. I say that about a lot of things but I truly mean it this time.
In addition to cooking the pasta, all you’ll need to do is stuff the sauce ingredients into a blender and press GO. That’s it. That’s the dish. Top it with feta and red pepper flakes if you’re so inclined (I always am) and dinner is served!
It’s punchy and slightly herbal from the basil, a little garlicky, with a hint of creaminess from the feta and cream cheese that get pureed in with the greens. Simple, but so so satisfying.
This recipe is from Julia Turshen’s newest cookbook, Simply Julia, which is honestly like a breath of fresh air. The recipes are made exactly for this time in the world – a year and a half after a pandemic when we’re burnt out, tired of cooking, and occasionally want to throw a pot at our significant others and tell them to just figure it out (by it, I mean dinner).
The recipes are simple and straightforward, requiring minimal equipment and ingredients, overwhelmingly family friendly and just good. I don’t know about you, but I could always use more of that in my life.
- kosher salt
- 1 lb spaghetti, linguine, or fettuccine
- 5 oz baby spinach
- 6 large lacinato kale leaves, stems discarded
- 1 large handful of fresh basil leaves
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled
- ½ cup feta, plus more for serving
- 3 tbsp cream cheese
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- red pepper flakes, for serving
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta according to package directions.
- Meanwhile, combine the spinach, kale, basil, garlic, feta cheese, cream cheese, and olive oil in a blender along with 1 cup of boiling pasta cooking water. Puree until smooth. Season to taste with salt if needed.
- Drain the pasta and return it to the pot. Add the green sauce and stir to combine.
- Divide among serving bowls and top with more feta and red pepper flakes.