Pasta with Garlic, Blue Cheese and Tomatoes

A few days ago I posted a recipe that included some reminiscing about our recent Vermont vacation, and while you may have thought you were done looking at my vacation pictures…guess what. I held back a few, because I wanted to have enough time to go over a couple of little treasures that I found while we were up there. I promise that this will be at least marginally related to that plate of pasta up there.

One of things we love to do is go exploring around the rambling unpaved roads, because you never know what you are going to find around the next turn. We found a couple of fabulous spots in Castleton, Vermont.The first was Wright Choice Alpacas. Have you ever met an alpaca before? I never had, and how adorable is this?


They are like life-size, walking, talking (they were very talkative) versions of your favorite stuffed animal, and we spent some fun time with Deb who introduced us to the alpacas and then showed us her gorgeous array of things created from their wool. (I’m not sure that is the technical term, so bear with me here. ) I picked out a soft, beautiful green gaiter, which Deb had knitted herself. I love the whole concept of a gaiter. My lovely assistant will demonstrate…


It’s open at the top, but it has a little drawstring. So you can leave it open and wear it around your neck, which is probably what I will do most days. My neck gets chilly.


OR, you can pull that drawstring closed, tie it in a bow, and wear it as a hat. Isn’t that the best??

When I was able to tear myelf away from the alpacas (I really, really wanted to take one with me), we drove into town to visit the spectacular Farrow Gallery and Studios, which features the glorious sculpture artwork of the late Patrick Farrow and Susan Farrow. Susan was there and gave us a lovely tour of the place, which included everything from giant sculptures to her own framed piece of art made from found Vermont iron, to an amazing display of sculpted jewelry. I knew exactly what I wanted as soon as I saw it.

It is a small pendant shaped into, yes, a clove of garlic. As the card says, among other things, I will now be safe forever from vampires. And of course it got me to thinking…garlic, garlic…which (finally!) brings me to that plate of pasta up there. This is a dish from the Pioneer Woman’s website that features three cloves of minced garlic, along with a load of other things near and dear to my heart, such as blue cheese, spinach, tomatoes and a whole lot of pasta. It’s a quick and easy recipe that cooks all in one pot (well two, if you count boiling the pasta), and the combo of the blue cheese, the tomato and the spinach is just heaven. Not to mention all that GARLIC.
See, I told you I would string this whole thing together! Here’s the recipe.

Pasta with Garlic, Blue Cheese and Tomatoes

Ingredients

Pasta with Garlic Blue Cheese and Tomatoes, from The Pioneer Woman
1-½ pound Pasta (angel Hair Or Thin Spaghetti), cooked
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
3 cloves Garlic, Minced
1 whole 28-ounce Can Diced Tomatoes, Drained
Dash Of Sugar
Salt And Freshly Ground Black Pepper, To Taste
Crushed Red Pepper Flakes, To Taste
¾ cups Crumbled Blue Cheese
¾ cups Heavy Cream
4 cups Baby Spinach
Half-and-Half, for thinning
Extra Blue Cheese Crumbles, For Garnish

Directions

Add olive oil to a large skillet and heat over medium heat. Add garlic and cook for a minute. Pour in drained tomatoes. Add sugar, pepper and crushed red pepper to taste. Coor for 10 - 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Reduce heat to low. Stir in crumbled blue cheese. Add cream and stir, then a little splash of half-and-half if sauce is too thick. Cook for a minute or two, tasting and adding more seasonings as needed.
Add spinach to pan. Immediately toss in the cooked and drained pasta. Serve immediately!


Comments

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  1. Haha you are too cute! A gaiter you say? It seems so multi-purpose! And I love that color. Gorgeous. I need to find one. I would also like to find an alpaca to cuddle with and love. That this is just so darn cute.

    You can never go wrong with a PW recipe. Especially not when it involves blue cheese and GARLIC. Delicious dish!

  2. Jessica - Sugar High says:

    I was wanting to take a look at that amazing pasta, but I became way too distracted by that alpaca! What a cute photo! I want one of those gaiters, it's gorgeous. And, a garlic clove pendant? I love it!!

    The pasta looks delicious, I love Ree's recipes

  3. Yum, Yum!!…And Oooo!, Awwwww! I love the recipe and the green gaiter!! :-)

  4. Sounds so good, but I don't know what half and half sauce is :( I don't think we have it in Australia. Boo

  5. Jhonny walker says:

    I love how you weave your tale. Much like walks along dist roads off of the main roads. It churns in small surprises and yet always comes together–right at the very end..to the more known alleys :) I dare say I smell some garlic in one of the houses…up that little turn..see that one..right there? :)

  6. Kate Morgan Jackson says:

    Thanks guys! xoxo

    Amy: half and half is a light kind of cream, and you can substitute a cup of milk mixed with a melted tablespoon of butter if you need to.

    Jhonny: Wow!!

  7. Fabulous!!!

  8. "Great post, very useful for a beginner like me"
    http://evocowire.com

  9. Aren't alpacas just the most wonderful creatures!? I'm working on my parents (they have some pasture land) to get a couple. :-)
    And the pasta sounds wonderful, I probably shouldn't read food websites around lunchtime, huh? Now I want to go home and make it!

  10. lesliewienswineryadventures says:

    This pasta dish looks amazing! All my favorite ingredients too. And the necklace is both amusing and beautifully done!
    Cheers! Leslie

  11. Wow, that looks phenom. I love your photos– That Alpaca is so adorable & the necklace is SO COOL!

  12. scrambledhenfruit says:

    The alpacas look like they're wearing sweaters- so cute! Pasta looks great too- I must not be a vampire because the garlic in this is calling me!

  13. I love the look of that Gaiter!! I have never seen such a thing. What an amazing idea! I love scarves but quickly get over the dangly bits flying around in the wind!I am going to try and convince my lovely Nana to make me one :-)
    I have been following your lovely blog for quite some time and just love it, Arohanui xx Emm

  14. Just finished eating this dish, prep was pretty easy and it was sooo good!! My boyfriend loved it too!! Thank you for for sharing this recipe and for making me look like I have skills in the kitchen!!

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