Orecchiette with Wilted Spinach, Chickpeas, and Pimentón Recipe

Orecchiette with Wilted Spinach, Chickpeas, and Pimentón Recipe
Staff Writer
Orecchiette with Wilted Spinach, Chickpeas, and Pimentón

Don’t you love recipes that can be thrown together in minutes, yet are healthful and over-the-top delicious?

This orecchiette easily fulfills all the above conditions. The tender yet robust chickpeas happily provide protein even as the copious amounts of spinach leaves lighten the load. The sweet pimentón coats everything with its seductive smokiness, while the shavings of nutty manchego cheese and the drizzle of herbaceous olive oil made with the delicate Arbequina Spanish olives bestow the perfect last touch.

Hearty, smoky, and savory, this pasta dish delivers heaps of flavor and leaves you feeling utterly satisfied.

4
Servings
509
Calories Per Serving
Deliver Ingredients

Ingredients

  • 1  tablespoon  sea salt, plus more to taste
  • 12  ounces  orecchiette
  • 1/3  cup  Arbequina extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for garnish
  • large cloves garlic, sliced thinly
  • 1/4  teaspoon  ground cayenne, or to taste
  • 1 1/2  tablespoon  pimentón dulce (Spanish smoked sweet paprika)
  • One 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained
  • 12  ounces  baby spinach
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Aged manchego, shaved with a vegetable peeler, to taste, for garnish

Directions

In a large pot, bring 6 quarts water to a boil over high heat. When the water is boiling, add the salt and the pasta. Cook pasta until tender but still al dente. Drain well.

While the pasta is cooking, heat a large heavy-bottomed skillet over medium-high heat. Add the olive oil and garlic. Sauté for 30 seconds until the garlic begins to sizzle, stirring constantly and making sure it doesn’t brown. Remove from heat and set aside.

Just before the pasta is ready, reheat the garlic-oil mixture over high heat. As soon as the garlic sizzles, add the cayenne, pimentón, chickpeas, and spinach. Toss until the spinach starts to wilt, about 1-2 minutes. Add the pasta and 1/3 cup of the pasta water. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Toss quickly and remove from heat.

Spoon the pasta into bowls. Garnish with manchego shavings, drizzle with a little olive oil, and serve immediately.

Nutritional Facts

Total Fat
18g
26%
Sugar
11g
12%
Saturated Fat
2g
8%
Cholesterol
2mg
1%
Carbohydrate, by difference
76g
58%
Protein
11g
24%
Vitamin K (phylloquinone)
12µg
13%
Calcium, Ca
5mg
1%
Choline, total
20mg
5%
Fiber, total dietary
1g
4%
Folate, total
19µg
5%
Magnesium, Mg
44mg
14%
Manganese, Mn
1mg
56%
Niacin
3mg
21%
Pantothenic acid
1mg
20%
Phosphorus, P
120mg
17%
Selenium, Se
8µg
15%
Sodium, Na
304mg
20%
Water
4g
0%
Zinc, Zn
1mg
13%

Orecchiette Shopping Tip

Italian food is about simplicity and letting the ingredients shine. So make sure you get ingredients that are great quality and flavor. Farmers markets and specialty stores will have great produce and products. Just be sure to have some great olive oil.

Orecchiette Cooking Tip

Unlike other highly regarded cuisines, Italian cooking is usually simple to make with many dishes having only 4 to 8 ingredients. Italian cooks rely chiefly on the quality of the ingredients rather than on elaborate preparation.

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