Anyway, let's move on...
Last night called for comfort food. Whenever hubby works late (but not late enough to completely blow off making dinner), I make pasta. Somehow, pasta is the one food I will happily start cooking at 8:00pm after the tiny is in bed. I don't know what it is. It may be the fact that it always involves olive oil and garlic in a saute pan (read: one of the top 5 smells in the whole wide world), or maybe it's because I drink Chardonnay while I cook it. Either way, it makes the long day totally worth it. I wanted to make a white sauce, but knew that I had a container of ricotta that was about to expire. (I also didn't feel like having a triple bypass after the stick of butter and cup of heavy cream I'd have typically preferred to use.) So I googled "using ricotta in a cream sauce" and this link caught my eye. It inspired me to branch out from my normal heavy white sauce I would have made had the Internet not existed. Not only did this new culinary revelation save me from hundreds of calories, it was simply delicious.
Here was the end result:
Here's what you'll need to serve 2:
- 2 to 3 tbsp olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic, chopped
- small container cherry tomatoes, cut in half
- salt and pepper to taste
- 6 to 8 oz low sodium chicken broth (or vegetable broth)
- 6 oz of ricotta
- Red pepper flakes to taste
- Variety of dried herbs to taste (I used thyme and oregano)
- 2.5 cups of your favorite short pasta (I used Farfalle)
- Parmesan cheese for serving
- Pour yourself a glass of wine (optional, but highly recommended)
- Bring a pot of water to boil and cook pasta according to package while prepping everything else
- Heat olive oil in pan, add garlic, and saute for 1-2 minutes over medium heat
- Add tomatoes and broth and season with a little salt and a good amount of pepper; bring to a low boil
- Reduce heat to low, cover and let simmer until tomatoes are soft (about 10-15 minutes)
- Once tomatoes are soft, sprinkle in some of your favorite dried herbs (I used thyme and oregano)
- When pasta is cooked, drain and return pasta to pot
- Stir ricotta and pasta together
- Add ricotta/pasta to the simmering tomato pan, and mix all together until it is well combined, hot, everything looks creamy and scrumptious.
- Place pasta on plate, and top with Parmesan cheese
- Pour another glass of wine, and enjoy! :)
I served this pasta with a simple arugula salad, dressed in my go-to: Balsamic vinegar, olive oil, and black pepper. I also quickly broiled a piece of buttered Italian bread, because -- quite frankly -- I wanted it and I didn't care if it added 20 grams of carbs before bedtime. It made my whole night.