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Creamed spinach a tasty pasta sauce

Thursday, July 04, 2002

By Nancy Anderson, Post-Gazette Staff Writer

Lynne Walsh's recipe for Green Gnocchi is a first for Countdown To Dinner -- it has only two ingredients.

How good can a recipe that simple be? Depends on the ingredients, of course, but in this instance, surprisingly tasty, pleasing to look at and quite filling.

Lynne doesn't remember where she got the recipe -- maybe Weight Watchers a long time ago -- but she likes its speed and versatility.

"This works well for any other pasta shapes, but I like the gnocchi best," she said. "The creamed spinach makes a delicious sauce."

Our mega market was out of frozen gnocchi the evening we stopped on the way home from work, so, with a stomach beginning to growl, we grabbed a box of mini-pierogies instead. They were delicious in the flavorful, saucy spinach.

The only cooking skills required by this recipe are knowing how to boil water and use a microwave.

Dinner was ready in less than 15 minutes. We had time to blanch some sugar snap peas to serve on the side. Total cost for the dinner: $4.78 (my neighbor contributed the peas from his garden).

Lynne prefers a green salad or just a plate of tomatoes in season and some good bread.

The Rochester, Beaver County, resident was one of our first contributors to Countdown to Dinner with Ground Beef Stroganoff on Oct. 8, 1998. It was the sixth recipe in this fledgling new feature. She since has contributed Tortellini Soup.

Being a working mom with two sons (almost-6-year-old Brannon and 1-year-old Thomas), she especially likes easy Countdown recipes.

A governmental liaison for Gateway Health Plan in Chatham Center, she has a long commute and little energy for big dinners.

Husband Bryan is a cook at a restaurant near Rochester.

    Green Gnocchi

  • 1 package frozen Stouffer's Creamed Spinach
  • 1 bag frozen gnocchi or other pasta shape
  • Grated fresh Romano cheese
  • Red pepper flakes, optional

Follow package directions for both products. Drain pasta and use the heated creamed spinach as a pasta sauce.

Top with grated Romano cheese. Serves 3 or 4.

Double the recipe for some good leftovers for lunch.

For those with more adventurous palates, add hot pepper flakes to taste.


Do you have an entree, salad or vegetable side dish recipe (no desserts, please!) that can be made in 30 minutes or less from six ingredients or fewer (not counting water, salt and pepper)? Share it with Countdown to Dinner.

The PG tests all recipes and if we select your recipe for publication, you'll receive a free selection from our cookbook grab bag of current releases.

Send your recipe to Countdown to Dinner, Post-Gazette Food, 34 Blvd. of the Allies, Pittsburgh, PA 15222, or fax to 412-263-1313. Please include your name, neighborhood and daytime phone number. Or e-mail to: nanderson@post-gazette.com. Questions? Call 412-263-1760.

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