This luxurious baked pasta dish is a secret superhero, hiding nutrient-packed spinach in its creamy depths. Even avowed greens haters won’t be able to resist this garlicky, cheesy, golden goodness.
|1 pound tubular pasta (rigatoni, ziti, or penne)||6 cups fresh baby spinach|
|3 tablespoons olive oil||1 pinch kosher salt|
|2 cloves garlic, minced||1 cup cream|
|1/2 teaspoon chili flakes||1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan or Pecorino Romano cheese|
Preheat the oven to 375. Grease a 9”x13” rectangular casserole dish or large oval gratin dish.
Bring a stockpot of salted water to a boil and add the pasta. Cook until just a little less than al dente, according to package instructions, and drain.
While the pasta water comes to a boil, heat the oil in a large skillet or saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the garlic and chili flakes and cook, stirring, for 1 minute before adding the spinach. You may need to add the spinach in batches, stirring to wilt the leaves and make room before adding another handful.
When the spinach has cooked down, season with a pinch of kosher salt. Stir in the cooked pasta.
Pour the spinach and pasta mixture into the prepared casserole dish. Pour the cream over the pasta and sprinkle the Parmesan cheese evenly on top.
Bake, uncovered, for 30 minutes, until the top of the gratin is golden brown and crunchy and the cream sauce is bubbly.
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