If you're ready for a fresh take on “spaghetti and red sauce,” this is the meal for you. Sun-dried tomatoes create a jammy, concentrated flavor base for this pesto in a pasta dish that's intense in the best possible way. It's accentuated by grape tomatoes, fresh spinach, and slivered almonds for a meal that's just as easy as sauce from a jar, and way more satisfying. Tip: Make quick work of mincing garlic by smashing the whole clove with the side of your chef's knife. Then rock the knife back and forth, keeping the tip steady by resting your other hand over the top.
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You Will Need
Before You Cook
Cook the Pasta
Once water is boiling, add pasta and cook until al dente, 8-10 minutes.
Drain in a colander and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process. Set aside.
Reserve pot; no need to wipe clean.
While pasta cooks, prepare ingredients.
Prepare the Ingredients
Coarsely chop tomatoes.
Halve baguette lengthwise.
Stack two spinach leaves, roll up, and slice thinly across the length (reserve remaining whole leaves for pasta).
Roast Tomatoes and Bake Garlic Bread
Combine tomatoes, half the garlic (reserve remaining for bread), 2 tsp. olive oil, ¼ tsp. salt, and a pinch of pepper on one half of prepared baking sheet. Spread into a single layer on their half.
Place halved baguette on other half of baking sheet, cut side up. Drizzle with 1 tsp. olive oil, remaining garlic, and a pinch of salt and pepper.
Roast in hot oven until baguette is toasted and lightly browned and tomatoes have softened, 7-10 minutes.
Finish the Pasta
Return pot used to cook pasta to medium heat and add 1 tsp. olive oil. Add whole spinach leaves and ¼ tsp. salt to hot pot and cook until just wilted, 30 seconds.
Stir in sun-dried tomato pesto until warmed through, 1 minute.
Remove from burner and stir in pasta and roasted tomatoes.
Meat lovers! If using chicken, pat dry and cut into 1" pieces on a separate cutting board. Season all over with a pinch of salt and pepper. Add to hot pot with 1 tsp. olive oil. Stir occasionally until chicken reaches a minimum internal temperature of 165 degrees, 5-7 minutes, then add spinach. If using shrimp, pat dry and add to hot pot with 1 tsp. olive oil. Cook until shrimp reaches a minimum internal temperature of 145 degrees, 2-3 minutes per side, then add spinach. If using sausage, remove from casing, and add to hot pot with 1 tsp. olive oil. Break into small pieces with a spoon until no pink remains, 4-6 minutes, then add spinach.
Finish the Dish
Plate dish as pictured on front of card, garnishing with slivered almonds, red pepper flakes (to taste), and thinly sliced spinach. Bon appétit!
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