I have a tendency to go overboard.
And food blogging only exaggerates it.
For example. That one time. Did I really need to add the grated apple, caramelized onions, butternut squash sauce, and crumbled bacon to what started as a simple mac and cheese? Actually, yes. That was a bad example.
But my over-zealous inner food blogger loves adding extra, sometimes unnecessary, and dare I even say distracting? ingredients to recipes that should be left alone. Simple. Un-messed with. Like homemade brownie batter with a spoon and a glass of milk: basic and perfect.
In way too recent memory, Ginger Coconut Jalapeno Sweet Potato Cabbage Lentils almost became a real recipe name on this blog. Delicious and yet another example of overboard. Instead I named it Creamy Thai Sweet Potatoes and Lentils, because I have a bad habit of naming any recipe with curry paste and coconut milk in it “Thai”, and it’s totally yum. But it was almost annoying.
One thing I’ve really tried hard to do as a food blogger is KEEP THE FOOD SIMPLE.
As in buttered noodles simple.
Part of my Pinch of Yum “job”, whatever that means, is creating recipes that are fun and unique and different and inspiring to all you lovely friends who read my blog, and I truly LOVE FOOD, all the delicious food across the whole wide Earth, so experimenting with new ingredients is reallyreally fun for me.
At the same time, simple and familiar is really my favorite.
Basic dishes with fresh ingredients that people feel comfortable making? I feel so good when that is what comes across through this little internet space.
This spaghetti is that, in a nutshell.
How good does that smell?
It’s like this. –> Butter (I splurged on the expensive stuff, which still isn’t as good as my favorite Market Pantry butter at home, but it’s butter and it’s delicious) bubbling on the stove with a pile of minced garlic and chopped fresh greens. Soft, sticky, carby whole wheat noodles boiling extra long in the pot because al dente isn’t going to cut it for this one. My tiny apartment smelling heavenly. Sea salt sticking to my fingers. My plate heaping with noodles. More butter. More herbs. Searching the fridge for Parmesan cheese. My fork winding its way through a pile of noodles.
Basics like this are why I love food.
And I mean Love. Food.
- 1 lb. whole wheat spaghetti
- 6 tablespoons butter + more for serving
- 8 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 large bunch basil, chopped
- 1 large bunch baby spinach, chopped
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- Parmigiano Reggiano cheese for topping
- Cook the spaghetti according to package directions.
- Meanwhile, heat the butter together in a large nonstick skillet over medium low heat. Add the minced garlic and saute for 3-5 minutes, until soft and fragrant. Be careful not to burn or over-brown the garlic because it will taste bitter. Low and slow is the winner here.
- Chop the spinach and basil (I had about 5 cups total – it reduces quite a bit as it wilts) into small bite-sized pieces and add to the skillet, stirring for just a minute or two to get the greens softened slightly. Season with salt.
- Add the spaghetti to the skillet (or vice versa depending on pan size) and season with salt and pepper. Toss well to combine and let it all rest for a few minutes to stick together a bit. Serve with an additional pat of butter and/or fresh grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese.
Here’s the nutrition information for 6 servings (a huge heaping plate full, just how I like it) not including cheese.
Q: Do I recommend eating the leftover noodles straight out’the fridge after a long day at work?
A: Have you been spying on me?