I love pasta in any shape, size or form ! I have tried to incorporate some greens in this recipe. My husband and little daughter are not big spinach or ‘greens’ fans, so i have tried to ‘camouflage’ the spinach in the white sauce. Well, it worked and they loved it…of course, the colour was green, though!
For the white sauce-
1 tbsp. butter
1 tbsp. flour
2 cups whole milk
A pinch nutmeg
Salt, white pepper to taste
1/2 cup gruyere cheese, grated
For the pasta-
*Whole wheat spaghetti – 1/2 pound
Asparagus spears- 5, thinly sliced
Whole Organic small button mushrooms- 15
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
A pinch red chilli flakes
1/4 cup parsley,chopped
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1/2 inch ginger, finely chopped
1 cup blanched, chopped spinach
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Salt, pepper to taste.
1 tbsp. + 1 tsp.olive oil
For the sauce-
Heat butter in a pan on medium heat. Add flour. Stir for about 2 mins.( to eliminate raw taste of flour). Add the milk, turn heat on high. Keep stirring to remove all lumps that may form. Once it comes to a boil, reduce heat to low. Add salt, white pepper and nutmeg. Cook for about 5-7 mins. Add gruyere cheese. Set aside and let cool.
Heat another pan. Add 1 tsp. olive oil. Add red chilli flaked, ginger, garlic. Sauté for a minute. Add chopped spinach and sauté for 2 mins. Add salt. Let cool. Add to the bechamel sauce.
In the same pan, on medium heat, add remaining olive oil. Add oregano, parsley, sauté for half a minute. Add mushrooms. Sauté for a few mins.till browned slightly. Add asparagus. Sauté for 5 mins or so, till cooked, but still has a bite to it. Add salt and pepper. Remove from heat.
Cook spaghetti according to package instructions. Add the spinach sauce and sautéed mushroom-asparagus mixture. Add the Parmesan cheese and mix well. Yay! and it’s ready to be eaten…
* Whole wheat spaghetti has a heartier flavour, which i like, apart from the fiber it provides. It can always be substituted with semolina/durum flour pasta.