So, I was uninspired for dinner, and was thinking about making homemade macaroni and cheese. But, I didn't want to have to make a separate veggie because I was feeling lazy. And seeing how I have been on a little artichoke spinach kick, I figured "why not?" It morphed as I made it and it the end result was nothing short of amazing. It tasted like spinach artichoke dip over pasta. Add in some tomatoes and caramelized onions and some cheese! YUM!! This would be fantastic without being baked too. Make this one!
PASTA SPINACH ARTICHOKE BAKE
- 1 lb. favorite pasta, cooked al dente
- 1/2 onion diced and caramelized
- 2 Tbsp butter
- 2-3 Tbsp flour
- 2 1/2 cups of milk (can substitute 1/2 c. with white wine)
- 1 cup (ish) of shredded 6 Italian cheese
- 1/2 cup velvetta cheese cubed
- 1 tsp granulated garlic (or 3-4 fresh cloves minced)
- few scrapes fresh grated nutmeg
- 3/4 cup artichoke hearts chopped coarsely
- 1 cup frozen chopped spinach, squeezed dry
- 1 can diced tomatoes drained and squeezed gently or 1 c. chopped fresh
- 1 cup mozzarella
- 1/4 c. parm cheese
Cook pasta according to directions in salted water.
Cook onion in some EVOO until caramelized and if desired add 3-4 fresh cloves garlic, minced at the end of cooking. Set aside.
Over med heat melt butter and add flour and whisk to make a roux. Slowly add milk (wine if desired), whisking as you add. Reduce heat to med low. Continue to whisk so not to burn milk. When milk is thickened (about 5-10 min) add mixed Italian cheeses and velvetta. Whisk and add granulated garlic, nutmeg and salt/pepper to taste. Cheese will be stringy almost. Keep whisking until it get more creamy and less stringy. Add artichokes, spinach, tomatoes and onions.
Put pasta in 9x13 and pour sauce with veggies. Stir to combine. Sprinkle with mozzarella and parm. and put in oven for about 20 min. @ 350 or alternatively, broil for a few minutes to melt cheese.