A Year of Recipes: #28

Red pepper flakes, kale, garlic, whole grain pasta, olive oil, lemon, parmesan cheese

Red pepper flakes, kale, garlic, whole grain pasta, olive oil, lemon, parmesan cheese…and in the crock pot some optional shredded chicken!

I was having a hard time deciding what to make, so I ended up on my beloved Foodgawker, and started a search for lemon which I further refined down with kale.  I ended up finding a fantastic recipe for a Spaghetti with Kale and Lemon.

Back when cooking intimidated me, one thing I was quite capable of making (and the closest I’d get to a real meal) was cooking pasta, adding spaghetti sauce from a jar and some hamburger I had browned up.  I actually haven’t done a ton of pasta this year, so this was a nice meal for me.

IMG_5492So to start the meal, I cooked the entire box of spaghetti.  Simple.  Like mentioned before, I can handle me some pasta!

The second step is to mix some lemon juice and olive oil with salt and pepper.  Again, simple!



IMG_5490The more challenging (and I use that term lightly) step is to cook the garlic for a few minutes and the add in the kale, cooking until slightly wilted.  I successfully cooked the kale without overdoing it.

I was able to cook my kale while the pasta was going.  This dish in general was easy to work on the sauce and veggies while the pasta was going.  I like dishes where you can finish up the other parts while something cooks.

IMG_5494In the end, this meal was fantastic!  I am glad I added the chicken (I just feel too guilty eating pasta without some protein added.)  The one thing I would have changed is to add more kale.  I also prepared my leftovers with a pinch of salt and dose of red pepper flakes, both of which felt quite necessary. The red pepper flakes are listed as optional, but they are what really bring all the flavors of the dish together.

Flavor 3/4 – Again, I want to emphasize the red pepper flakes are necessary! 
3/4 – Getting the kale cooked correctly can be slightly challenging
Guiltless 3.5/4 – Not bad, not bad.
Leftovers 4/4 – I had plenty of leftovers (which I always love) and my little tupperware containers reheated easily at work and kept in the fridge for several days.