Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Rigatoni with Spinach and Mushrooms in a Tomato Cream Sauce

Last Sunday we had my friend Benjie over for dinner. Benjie is a vegetarian and mentioned that he was not a huge fan of cheese, so I had to find a non-cheesy vegetarian meal. I have been wanting to try making a tomato cream sauce for a while now, so this seemed like the perfect opportunity. I modified a recipe I found on allrecipes.com and added sauted spinach and mushrooms to complete the dish. Served with homemade garlic bread and a salad, it was a great meal!

Rigatoni with Spinach and Mushrooms in a Tomato Cream Sauce
(if making for 2, use half of recipe...full recipe makes around 5 dinner portions)

1 lb Rigatoni pasta
Baby spinach, stems removed
Baby bella mushrooms, sliced
Olive oil
1 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 (28 ounce) can Italian-style diced tomatoes, undrained
2 tbsp dried basil leaves
1 1/2 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp salt
Few grinds black pepper
1 C light cream
2 tbsp butter

1. Saute onion and garlic in a sauce pan over medium heat until tender.
2. Add tomatoes, basil, sugar, oregano, salt and pepper and stir.
3. Increase heat to medium high and boil for about 5 minutes until most of the liquid has evaporated.
4. Transfer to blender and puree for a few seconds until smooth.
5. This is a "holding stage" for the dish. You can prepare the sauce to this point and then work on the rest of dinner and finish it later.
6. Saute spinach and then mushrooms in a bit of olive oil while water is boiling for pasta. Set aside.
7. Add pasta and cook until "al dente". In the meantime, reheat the sauce.
8. Add cream and butter to sauce and simmer over low-medium heat for 5 minutes.
9. Toss pasta with sauce and add spinach and mushrooms, making sure to drain off any released water.
10. Enjoy!

Difficulty: Medium
Debbie's Rating: 10- Definitely a "restaurant quality" pasta dish.
Hirsh's Rating: 9
Benjie's Rating: 9


  1. Debbie,

    I would like to try this recipe with 8 oz. of pasta. Could you let me know how much spinach and how much mushrooms to use?


  2. I think you and Dad will really like it. I would say about a half a bag of spinach and 1/2 container of mushrooms should be good, but more or less would be fine!