Monday, January 19, 2009

garlic pasta dump

Could I be turning into...GASP... a cook? As in, one of those people who can improvise with real-life food ingredients?! Mayhaps, mayhaps. For today, I am week three into Operation: Eat Real Food, and I have only fallen off the bandwagon twice...aka have surcumbed to the powers and deliciousness of cereal for dinner.

So what was on the menu for tonight....or, actually, the entire week? Garlic Pasta Dump! Basically, I made garlicky olive oil, boiled up some pasta, and dumped in whatever veggies I had in my cupboard. So really, this recipe could be modified any way you'd like, depending
what you have on hand. Easy peesy, right?

So I love that we have a new housemate in our house this semester...Raluca!!! Not only does Raluca have mad table-dancing skills, but she has lots of cutesy kitchen utensils! Like this little oil pot that can be used to heat up garlic and olive oil without burning the garlic. Magic!

Just for the record, I used about 1/4 cup olive oil and about a full teaspoon of minced garlic and made 16 oz. (1 box) of pasta. This seemed like a good pasta:garlic:oil ratio.

So what was in today's dump? Olives, mushrooms, peas, and shrimp. Not a bad combination. And for the garlic oil part, basically you just heat up however much oil you think you'll need to coat your pasta, and add lotsss of garlic. I mean, you want to keep the vampires away, right? And really, if you heat up too much oil for some reason, you don't have to use all of it. Oh, and a word to the wise, garlic burns so so easily! Take that puppy off the stove when it starts smelling of garlic-deliciousness and before it starts to brown. Or else your house will smell of burnt garlic. And that is not a delicious smell.

Dear Meijer Pasta-Packing People,
Why was there gemelli and penne in my box of pasta today? I think there may be a slight problem in your pasta-packaging skills. Maybe you should check up on this.
Love, Patti

Hmmm, strange......but makes life interesting, I guess. :)

And TA DA! The finished pasta, post-cooking. Yes, there be definitely two types of pasta in that box. And for some strange reason (and I don't know why), I have a slight addiction to eating pasta sans sauce and salted. This tastes so so good. Don't ask, because I seriously don't know.

So when you've got your pasta all cooked, your veggies all ready, and your protein of choice cooked up, drain your pasta, stick it in a big bowl, and....1, 2, 3 DUMPPP IT ALL IN. Your mix-ins, that is. :)

Then take the garlic oil, and drizzle as much as you desire over the dumpage. Then serve. It's as easy as that. This is also great salted and cheesed (parmesan). Mmmmmm.

Garlic Dump Pasta

1/4 cup olive oil
1-2 tsp. garlic, minced
16 oz. (1 box) pasta, any kind
1 can mushrooms, drained
1 can peas, drained
Shrimp, cooked (about 20 small)
Olives, sliced
Basil, salt, and
parmesan, as desired

Fill a large pot with water. Generously sprinkle salt into water. Once water is boiled, prepare pasta according to directions on box.

While pasta is cooking, heat olive oil and garlic in small pot. Remove from heat when garlic is fragrant and before it turns brown.

Place pasta in a big bowl, and dump on the peas, mushrooms, olives, and shrimp. Pour over garlic oil, and gently mix until combined. Sprinkle with basil, salt, and parmesan, as desired.

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