This was supposed to be amazing. Savory Italian flavors, deliciously chewy pasta, fresh basil... what a great way to trick yourself into eating pounds of dark leafy greens!
I mean, I am not sorry that I just made a huge batch. But it was a little unphenomenal. I used too much liquid and too much oregano, so that you couldn't taste the basil (which was higher quality). And, I got impatient and didn't cook the sauce as long as I needed to for the flavors to really come into their own. So, do these things, and I bet this recipe will be even better. Be sure to use high-quality canned tomatoes (like John Muir Glen) as they are really a star ingredient here.
Whole wheat penne and greens in tomato sauce
1 onion, finely chopped
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1 28-oz can crushed tomatoes
1 TB red pepper flakes (or less, to taste)
salt to taste
1 bay leaf
splash (or more) red wine (optional)
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp dried oregano (or 1 TB fresh)
chopped fresh basil
chopped chives or scallions
stock or water as necessary (I used a little miso broth)
2 c whole wheat penne or rotini pasta
1 lb greens (collard, mustard, etc.)
1. In a large cast iron skillet, heat olive oil. Saute onion and garlic for several minutes. Mix in tomatoes, pepper flakes, salt, bay leaf, red wine, sugar, and oregano. Simmer for 40+ minutes, stirring occasionally.
2. In a pot or saucepan, prepare pasta according to instructions. In a separate, large stockpot, cook greens in salted water until tender. Drain pasta and greens and set aside.
3. Stir chopped basil and scallions/chives into the sauce and cook for about 10 more minutes. Adjust salt and red pepper to taste (keep in mind you'll be diluting the sauce with the pasta and green).4. Add pasta and greens to the skillet (if it looks like it won't fit, try the stockpot in which you cooked the greens). Stir to mix thoroughly, and serve hot. Serves about 5.