2.14.2013

Mediterranean Pasta

Both of my parents are turning 60 this year!  I originally wanted to have a surprise party for them at my house but life happens and plans changed.  Since I am relocating across the country in two weeks, I unfortunately won't be here for their actual birthdays, so decided to cook them dinner and have a little early celebration at their house.

One of my mom's favorite dishes is Penne Mediterranean from Bravo restaurant.  This pasta dish includes spinach, feta, sun dried tomatoes and pine nuts, amongst other delicious ingredients.  I decided to re-create it at home and it turned out amazing!  The recipe I found online was enough to feed an army, so I adjusted it so it was enough for one family!

Happy 60th to the most supportive, loving parents a girl could ask for!  Love you both!

 
Mediterranean Pasta
recipe adapted by recipelink.com
photos by halftomatohalfpotato

INGREDIENTS
- 4 Tablespoons Olive Oil
- 1.5 teaspoons chopped garlic
- 3 to 4 Tablespoons sun dried tomatoes, chopped
- 1/2 Cup Bercy Sauce (recipe below)
- 2 Tablespoons feta cheese
- 4 Tablespoons softened butter
- 1 pinch salt and pepper
- 1 cup fresh spinach
- 1 lb cooked penne noodles, al dente
- 2 teaspoons toasted pine nuts (for garnish)
- 2 Tablespoons feta cheese crumbles (for garnish)

DIRECTIONS
- Heat oil over medium-high heat in a sauté pan
- Add garlic and sun dried tomatoes and sauté
- Add 1/2 Cup of Bercy Sauce; let it bubble and reduce, stirring frequently
- Add butter, feta cheese and salt & pepper; mix together
- Add spinach and pasta; toss well
- Place mixture into serving bowl and top with feta & pine nuts

Bercy Sauce
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 1.5 Tablespoons chopped shallots
- 1 teaspoon chopped garlic
- 1 cup white wine
- 2 cups water
- 2 Tablespoons chicken base
- 1 Tablespoon water
- 1 Tablespoon cornstarch

- Heat oil over medium-high heat in a pot
- Add garlic and shallots, saute until golden brown
- Add white wine, let it bubble and reduce by half, stirring frequently
- In a separate bowl, mix chicken base and 2 cups water
- Add mixture to pot and bring to a boil
- In a separate bowl, add 2 Tablespoons water to corn starch, mix well
- Add cornstarch mixture to sauce
- Simmer for 10 minutes
- Strain and discard garlic and shallots