Spaghetti with Lemon, Chile, & Creamy Spinach

Welcome to adult swim on today’s episode of FFF.  Not because I’m planning to use foul language (never!) or allow scantily clad bimbos to run amok (could be amusing) — it’s just, this pasta recipe has some strong flavors that the average kid on the street is probably not going to appreciate, and for that I apologize.  I just got done apologizing to my own twerps, in fact.  Can’t win ‘em all.  But if you’re a fan of lemon, spinach, and lightened-up pasta dishes, then today is your day!
I love how this recipe calls for low-fat yogurt as the base for the sauce (which in lieu of heavy whipping cream, is probably where it headed south for the kiddos).  Add in some fresh lemon zest and you have a thick, tangy sauce that goes great with the neutral spaghetti and tons of super healthy spinach.  And by the way, don’t you love it when your starch and your vegetable can be combined into one simple sidedish?

This would be great topped with a few grilled shrimp, or as a side to roasted chicken or salmon.  I’m not sure I would serve it as a main course … that’s just me.  And I definitely would not in a million years serve it to my kids again.

Have a great Wednesday!

Serves: 4

1/2 lb. spaghetti (Davinci Pastas are on sale)
1 1/2 c. plain low-fat yogurt (not fat free; Greek Gods Yogurt is on sale)
1 T. flour
1 T. olive oil (Davinci Olive Oil is on sale if you’re running low)
4 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 t. crushed red pepper flakes
10 oz. baby spinach
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1/4 c freshly grated Parmesan cheese

In a large saucepan of boiling salted water, cook the spaghetti until al dente.  Drain and return to the saucepan, reserving 1 cup of the pasta cooking liquid.

Meanwhile, in a bowl, whisk the yogurt with the flour until smooth.  In a large skillet, heat the olive oil.  Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and cook over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until fragrant, about 2 minutes.  Add the yogurt and bring to a simmer over moderate heat, stirring.  Add the spinach by the handful and cook until wilted, stirring.  When all of the spinach has been added, stir in the lemon zest season with salt and pepper.

Add the sauce to the spaghetti and toss well to coat, adding reserved cooking liquid if mixture seems dry.  Mound in bowls, sprinkle with the Parmesan and serve right away.

CALORIES 329; TOTAL FAT 7g (sat. 2.8g); CARBOHYDRATES 49g; FIBER 9g.

Featured, Fresh, Frugal, Fabulous | April 12th, 2011