Linguini w/ Heirlooms & Leeks

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DSC_0255After a long weekend at my girlfriend’s bachelorette party in San Diego, I felt I needed some redemption. I am not sure whether I mean redemption in character or simply in a healthy meal to put me back to a normal state. I came home, feeling a bit (ahem) under-the-weather, so to speak. I couldn’t let the wild night ruin my entire Sunday though, I would not waste the daylight! Get yourself together! (This was honestly the pep-talk I had to give myself). I decided I would not let day stray from me and I would make dinner for my sweet husband (whom I so missed while I was gone) and myself. Nonetheless my insides needed a little TLC. In the end, redemption would come in the form of dinner and a new blog post….I turned the day around I was productive! (Yes, making dinner was a celebratory event for me during said state of being).

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Meet my new favorite quick yet healthy dinner. I don’t know whether it is the leeks (I am obsessed with these mild onion flavored stalks), or maybe the gorgeous mini heirlooms that brighten this dish right up, but I am not going to choose. I especially love the color combination of the vibrant tomatoes with the vivid green spinach making the presentation so pleasing to the eye. The vegetable stock makes a flavorful sauce to coat the noodles and the parmesan cheese makes it seem creamy in texture. It is super easy to prepare and is the perfect light and healthy pasta for a summer night.

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Linguini w/ Heirlooms & Leeks {Vegetarian}

Makes 2 (large) servings or 4 (smaller) servings
Prep time: 5 minutes, Cook time: 20 minutes 

 

1 8oz bag of linguini (I like the Garlic and Basil Linguini from Trader Joe’s)

1.5 TBSP of Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided

2 leeks, sliced in half-moons and cleaned well

1 lb mini heirloom tomatoes, halved

2 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 cup vegetable stock

1 packed cup fresh spinach

1 or 2 tsps red wine vinegar

1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

salt & pepper

1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)

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1. Prepare the linguini per package directions. Drain and set aside.

2. In a large sauté pan heat 1 TBSP of the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the chopped leeks to the pan, 1/2 tsp sea salt, 1/2 tsp pepper, and sauté for about 5 minutes, or until soft. Add the minced garlic to the pan and heat for a minute until fragrant. Add the vegetable stock and let simmer for 3-5 minutes before adding in the halved mini heirlooms. Cook the tomatoes in the sauce for 2 minutes before turning off the heat.

3. Add the tomato leek sauce to the pasta and toss to coat. Add the spinach, the grated parmesan, 2 tsps olive oil, and red wine vinegar. Add more salt and pepper to taste and the red pepper flakes if doing so. Toss together and serve immediately. Feel free to add some toasted pine nuts to this for a crunchy touch.

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