We’re in the final weeks of summer and if there is one more activity to add to your summer bucket list, it should be to eat this pasta on a patio and wash it down with a glass of crisp white wine or razor-cold Summer Ale. Pure summer bliss!
“Light” is certainly not the first word that comes to mind when describing a pasta dish, but I assure you this meal fits the bill. You could lighten it up even further by subbing the pasta for zoodles, spaghetti squash or even quinoa.
I used bucatini pasta because I absolutely love the texture. Bucatini is a thick spaghetti-like pasta with a hole running through the center. The hole mainly serves as a vessel to capture whatever sauce you toss the pasta in, making each bite loaded with flavor. Pretty genius if you ask me!
One thing I am incredibly sad about is the fact that tomato season is slowly coming to an end. I’ve been finding the most gorgeous Heirloom tomatoes at my local farmers markets and I am SO not ready to bid this season adieu!
One of my favorite ways of preparing tomatoes this season has been to roast them in olive oil, salt and pepper (simplicity is key) and serve them with a little fresh basil as an appetizer or snack. Roasting tomatoes truly brings their flavor to life and also cuts down the acidity.
Even if you don’t prepare this pasta dish, you should at least do your taste buds a favor and roast a batch of juicy cherry tomatoes before summer ends. Spread them on a toasted baguette, toss them in a pasta salad or simply eat them with a spoon. All options are equally delicious!
The roasted pieces of cauliflower add a nice extra crunch to the dish, which my fellow “texture” peeps will likely enjoy. If you want to add a protein source, a poached egg on top would be my recommendation. The runny yolk makes the pasta a little extra “saucy” and enhances the richness of the dish. Soo gooood!
Tossing in some grilled chicken, ground turkey or even a salmon filet would also be super tasty.
Roasted Cauliflower and Tomato Pasta
- 1/2 lb pasta of choice – I used bucatini
- 2 cups cauliflower, chopped into small bite-sized pieces
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes
- 2 generous handfuls of fresh spinach
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 shallot, diced
- 3 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
- 2 tbsp fresh oregano, chopped
- 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
- 3 tbsp Italian-seasoned bread crumbs
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil. Toss cauliflower and tomatoes in 1 tbsp. olive oil, salt and pepper. Roast for 22-25 minutes, tossing once halfway through. The tomatoes should be slightly burst by the end of roasting.
- In the meantime, heat remaining 2 tbsp. of olive oil in a large oven-safe skillet over medium heat. Add shallots, garlic and a dash of salt and pepper. Sauté for 2-3 minutes, until garlic is aromatic. Add roasted tomatoes and cauliflower into skillet to be combined with garlic and shallots.
- Fill a large pot two thirds of the way full with water. Bring to a boil, add pasta of choice, reduce heat to a simmer and cook pasta until al dente.
- Once pasta is cooked, transfer one third of pasta water to skillet and drain the rest in a colander. Add pasta, spinach, basil, oregano and parmesan to skillet and toss to combine. The spinach should wilt down when tossed with hot pasta. Top with bread crumbs and place in the oven at 400 degrees F for 10 minutes, until bread crumbs start to brown.
- Remove from oven, let cool for 5 minutes before serving. Enjoy!
Nutrition Facts per Serving (1/4th of entire recipe)
Calories: 316; Total Fat: 12 gm; Saturated Fat: 2 gm; Cholesterol: 5.5 mg; Sodium: ~400 mg; Carbohydrates: 44 gm; Fiber: 4.5 gm; Sugar: 5 gm; Protein: 10 gm