I used a tortellini recipe from one of my favorite cookbooks, Our Best Bites, as the inspiration for this supper. Whenever spring and summer approach, out go the heavy pasta dinners for cold nights and in come the light and fresh pastas that are perfect for warm weather. This little recipe would be great as a vegetarian main course (just omit the bacon) or the perfect side dish to a piece of chicken or fish. It’s pasta summer-style…
1 (12 oz) container cheese-filled ravioli (or tortellini)
3-4 pieces of bacon, chopped (or I used a 1/4 pound of pancetta, chopped)
3 garlic cloves, chopped
2 tablespoons flour
2 cups milk
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flake
1 tablespoon lemon zest
2 cups fresh spinach leaves
1/2 cup Mozzarella cheese, shredded
Parmesan cheese, to garnish
Salt and Pepper (S&P)
Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO)
Bring a large pot of water to boil over medium-high heat. Drop your ravioli in and cook about five minutes.
Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat about 2 tablespoons of EVOO over medium-high heat. Brown your bacon about 5 minutes. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon and reserve on a paper towel. Add in your garlic and saute about a minute in the same pan where you cooked your bacon. Whisk in your flour and milk and reduce heat to medium-low, stirring often. Stir in your red pepper flake and a pinch of S&P. Stir until sauce thickens up a bit (just 3 or 4 minutes).
Drain off your ravioli and add to your sauce mixture. Stir in your lemon zest, spinach and Mozzarella cheese. Remove from heat and serve garnishing with Parmesan cheese and your crumbled bacon on top.
Simple and delicious. Thanks Our Best Bites!