Pasta Puttanesca

Pasta Puttanesca This is a great pantry pasta that you can pull together in no time, with ingredients that you likely have sitting around in your house. I love the salty and spicy ingredients here, like capers, olives, anchovies and red pepper flakes, that give this pasta its kick. Feel free to include your own additions or take out those that don’t suit you.
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Have you ever made a pasta dish where you cook the pasta in the sauce itself? The advantage of this method is the pasta absorbs so many good flavors, instead of just pouring the sauce on top and coating it. This is a relatively simple sauce and the spinach adds great color and a deep flavor – I always add extra spinach, to get the extra veggies in and make this a full dinner. (Adapted from Cooking Light)
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Butternut squash and Sage are a classic fall combination. This pasta dinner with carmelized butternut squash, leeks and crispy sage, topped with parmesan cheese has that great combination of salty and sweet.

Easy Rolled Manicotti

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This is the only way to make manicotti, as far as I’m concerned. Thanks to this hack from Cooks Illustrated, instead of stuffing cheese filling into already cooked noodles, this manicotti uses softened no-bake lasagna sheets, into which you roll the filling. Once you make this Manicotti, with its creamy ricotta basil filling, and topped with marinara and gooey mozzarella, you too will be sold on this method. Serve this with steamed broccoli and your meal is complete!

Lemon Parmesan Kale Salad

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When I was growing up, Kale was that funny green stuff that showed up on a catering platter. As we all know, Kale has become one of the “it” superfoods and Kale salad is a favorite way to eat it. This Kale salad, with its lemon, garlic, and parmesan has a lot of punch. Unlike traditional salads made with lettuces, Kale salad will keep in the fridge without wilting for a day or two or can be made ahead and stored. (Adapted from Marin Mama website)
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My kids love kale – yes, you just read that. Now, I know not everyone’s family loves kale, but who doesn’t love pasta night? Try this recipe for a family dinner and see if you can make them all Kale converts. The bright lemony flavor of the zest and juice and salty parmesan, together with the chewy kale, all come together to create a full flavored pasta that adults and kids alike will love.