Sunday, January 8, 2012

Almond & Kale Linguine

This dish was something I threw together the other night with some ingredients we had on hand and it turned out to be our favorite dish of the week. I had picked up some curly kale and thought that it would be fun to cut it up small to resemble curly parsley while also adding some extra nutrition to the pasta. I had some dried linguine (feel free to use either regular, whole wheat, or brown rice linguine) and thought I'd add in some toasted almonds to kick up the protein. This is a simple pasta but developed lots of flavor using some of the pasta water to make a light sauce and finishing with some fresh lemon juice and parmesan cheese. It's a quick, easy, healthy dish that's perfect for a weeknight meal.

Almond & Kale Linguine
Serves 2 (can be easily doubled)

Active Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

8 oz. linguine
1/2 bunch curly kale, washed, leaves removed from stems, and chopped into small pieces
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 c. almonds, roughly chopped
1/4 c. freshly grated parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
Juice of 1/2 lemon

Boil pot of water for the pasta and add a few big pinches of salt. Cook pasta according to directions.

Meanwhile, if using salted almonds, simply toast in a small saucepan over medium heat until golden brown and fragrant (don't let them burn!). If using raw almonds, toast and then drizzle with a little olive oil and a pinch of fine grain sea salt and stir to coast. Set aside.

When pasta is almost done, heat 1 T. olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and saute for about 10 seconds, then add the kale. Saute for only about 1-2 minutes until it starts to wilt.

Reserve 1/2 c. of the pasta cooking liquid, then drain the pasta, and immediately add it to the skillet with the kale. Add the cheese, almonds, lemon juice, and 1 t. kosher salt, then pour the 1/2 c. cooking liquid over the dish and stir for a minute or two until it all comes together. Separate into bowls and serve with a little extra parmesan cheese.

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