Orecchiette with Wilted Spinach, Chickpeas, and Pimentón Recipe

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

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.

Ready in
20 m
4
Servings
508
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
  • 8 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.

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.

Nutritional Facts

Total Fat
5g
8%
Sugar
7g
N/A
Saturated Fat
0.6g
3%
Protein
22g
44%
Carbs
96g
32%
Vitamin A
465µg
52%
Vitamin B6
0.6mg
29.7%
Vitamin C
27mg
45%
Vitamin E
3mg
15%
Vitamin K
418µg
100%
Calcium
178mg
18%
Fiber
13g
51%
Folate (food)
233µg
N/A
Folate equivalent (total)
233µg
58%
Iron
5mg
30%
Magnesium
149mg
37%
Monounsaturated
0.7g
N/A
Niacin (B3)
3mg
13%
Phosphorus
318mg
45%
Polyunsaturated
2g
N/A
Potassium
910mg
26%
Riboflavin (B2)
0.3mg
16%
Sodium
674mg
28%
Thiamin (B1)
0.2mg
13.4%
Zinc
3mg
17%

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