Roasted Red Pepper Alfredo with Spinach

A few weeks ago, I was watching one of my favorite cooking shows, Mad Hungry with Lucinda Scala Quinn. She was making fettucine alfredo with chicken. By the time I was finished watching the show, I was ready to go to the store to purchase the ingredients necessary to make said dish, even though I already had something else planned and all the ingredients for that dish in the fridge. I held back that night, but I knew it had to go on the menu soon.

This recipe originally started out as fettucine alfredo with spinach. It ended up being roasted red pepper linguine alfredo with spinach. I had a red pepper in the fridge and knew I was only going to use half of it for the dish that I originally bought it for….I’ve been trying to include more veggies in my meals, and I’ve been trying to waste less food, hence the roasted red pepper. As for the linguine, I just couldn’t find a whole-wheat fettucine at the store for a decent price…but linguine was quite available. So, here you go!

This recipe serves two, but is easily multiplied to serve more.

I started by cutting a red pepper in half, ripping out its guts, and burning it to pieces. Pretty violent, huh? Yes, I just laid it right on top of the flame from my gas stove. I did have to use tongs to turn it and hold it in certain positions. Just let it go till it’s black, then place it in a bowl and cover it with plastic wrap for 10-15 minutes. After that time is up, it will be quite easy to remove the skin.

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Boil a pot of water, salt, and cook the pasta according to package directions-I cooked 6 ounces for 2 servings. Next, I peeled 2 cloves of garlic. Isn’t that peeler nifty? Yes, it’s a unitasker….I realize Alton would be very disappointed in me. I got it when I was a Pampered Chef consultant. It comes in handy for those rare occasions when I need a whole peeled clove. Anyway, drop your cloves into a cup of heavy cream in a pan and simmer for 10 minutes. We did this over medium-low heat. At the end of your cooking time, add a tablespoon of butter and stir it until melted, then salt to taste.

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At this point, I cut the roasted pepper into strips and dropped it into the food processor with the two cloves of garlic and 1/4 cup of the cream sauce from the pan. I whirred this in the food processor until (mostly) smooth, then added it back into the sauce. I chopped a small handful of flat-leaf parsley and stirred it in as well, then grated in about 1/4 cup of parmesan cheese.

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Once I cooked and drained the linguine, I placed it back into the pot and added about 4 1/2 ounces of baby spinach to the pot, then clamped on the lid. Every couple of minutes I gave it a stir then clamped the lid back on until the spinach wilted. Once the spinach was wilted, I poured the sauce over and tossed it.

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Serve with good bread and olive oil (and more cheese grated over, of course!). Delicious!

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