Y'all know how much I love pasta. I often cook it when I don't have much time to cook, or just don't want to spend much energy cooking. One night this week, I decided to make a pasta using a jar of capers I'd just bought. I wanted to do a lemon caper pasta.
Of course, I didn't have a lemon. The story of my life! haha So I used the bottled juice.
I based this recipe on one I found on Food Network from Giada De Laurentiis. It's called Rigatoni with Greens (original can be found here). Here's my modified recipe...
Package of greens (I used about 1/2 of a large container of baby spinach)
2 tsp chopped garlic
3 Tbsp capers (but I thought it needed more, so do to taste)
Lemon juice--several good squirts (original calls for lemon zest if you have that)
1 can chick peas, drained and rinsed
1-3/4 cups Parmesan cheese--shredded
chopped Kalamata olives if desired (we thought this dish needed the extra flavor and added them to our plate, however increasing the capers might help)
1/2 tsp chili flakes (in the original recipe, but I didn't have any)
Your choice of pasta noodles (I used angel hair)--about 3/4 of a package
Cook your pasta until not quite done.
While pasta is cooking, heat 1/4 cup olive oil and add the chick peas. Cook about 5 minutes, stirring often. They get nice and golden and almost crispy and I wanted to eat them then! Try to refrain and add the capers, garlic and chili flakes and cook for 1 minute. If you want to add the olives, do so at this point. Then add the greens as well as a little salt and cook until wilted.
Before draining the pasta, scoop out about 2 cups of the water to reserve for later. Add about 1/4-1/2 cup of the reserved pasta water to the sauce and simmer for a minute or two.
Now add the pasta noodles and then sprinkle with 1-1/2 cups parmesan and the lemon juice (or zest). Then add about 1 cup of reserved pasta water (this is what makes your sauce saucy). :) Let the noodles finish cooking and then serve! Top with the rest of the parmesan.
I thought it turned out a little bland since I didn't have any of the chili pepper the recipe calls for. Though, the olives did help. But we still needed some spice.
I thought this Penzey's Spices Mural of Flavor would be perfect since it has a lemony component.
The meal was good once we spiced it up!