On Sundays I love cooking a hearty meal. It helps me to wind down and relax from the week and start the new one off on the right foot, but one of my resolutions was to simplify. To me, that means making a one pan meal instead of using every dish in the kitchen! Growing up, my Dad used to tease my Mom about not being able to cook without using every single pot and pan that we had. Well, I am definitely my mothers daughter!
Last night I was browsing new recipes and found one by Giada De Laurentiis for “Spicy Red Wine Spaghetti”. I have made many dishes with wine before, but never one that was completely based on my favorite adult beverage! I knew I had to try it out and add my own spin to it. This pasta is so simple its crazy. 1 pan, 20 minutes, dinner is done and feels elegant. It’s warm and rustic, without being over indulgent. The wine thickens to give the noodles a perfect silky texture. The onion and mushroom become so tender, they almost melt into the pasta! The salty bite of parmesan on the top gives it the perfect amount of balance. Sprinkle a few chopped green onions or some parsley on the top for color and freshness and this is the perfect one pot meal.
Red wine is the most versatile wine and it pairs well with everything! The possibilities for this dish are as endless as the types of wine you can find at the store. I chose to use my favorite red wine that I always keep in stock at my house, a cabernet sauvignon. The one I used was a cheap, but good bottle of wine. I know many people would think it a waste to use a nice bottle on cooking but trust me, never cook with wine that you wouldn’t drink! It will drastically change the flavor of your food. My motto is if you wouldn’t drink it, don’t eat it!
(I ate the pasta too fast to take a picture, so heres a picture of me loving the wine that I used in the dish!)
Want a slightly healthier alternative? Try using black bean or edamame noodles instead of the traditional kind. Instead of half cooking them before, add the raw noodles to the wine mixture and cook them completely that way, the sauce will be runnier without the starch to thicken it but add a tablespoon of tomato paste and it’s an easy, healthy alternative!
Want more veggies to stretch it further as a meal? Try adding broccoli right at the end and top with goat cheese. Or add chopped olives and sun-dried tomatoes, add some feta at the end and it’s an easy summer meal! There are so many variations that you could make with this, anything that you would put on a cheese board is going to go perfectly!
Spicy Red Wine Pasta
- 1 Pound Linguine, or any type of long, thin pasta
- 1/4 cup Olive Oil
- 3 large Clove of Garlic, chopped
- 1 small White Onion, chopped
- 1 package (roughly 15) White Button Mushrooms, chopped
- 4 handfuls (give or take) Spinach, torn
- 1 teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper, plus more for seasoning
- 1 bottle Cabernet Sauvignon, or your preferred heavy red Wine
- 1 tablespoon Butter
- Salt and Pepper
- Freshly Grated Parmesan for garnishing
- Fresh herbs for garnishing, such as parsley or green onion
- In a large nonstick pan, bring enough salted water to cover the pasta to a boil. Add the pasta and cook for 6 minutes, stirring occasionally, until half cooked. Drain the pasta.
- In the same pan, heat the olive oil over medium high heat, add the onion and mushroom and cook 5-6 minutes until tender and the onion is translucent. Lightly salt and pepper while they are cooking.
- Add the garlic and red pepper flakes, cook until the garlic is fragrant, no more than 2 minutes.
- Add the wine and bring to a simmer over medium high heat. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer gently for 3-5 minutes.
- Add the pasta to the pan. Cook, stirring frequently, until almost all of the wine is absorbed and the pasta is al dente, about 5 minutes.
- Turn off the heat, salt and pepper to taste and add the butter. Toss until the sauce thickens enough to coat the pasta.
- Top with fresh parmesan and herbs, plus more red pepper flakes to your desired level of heat.