Warm Up With These Weeknight Recipes

Winter is a wonderful, but busy, time. With the stress this season brings, it’s difficult to get dinner on the table each night. Warm up your weeknights with these simple, satisfying recipes.

Pasta with Fresh Tomatoes and Pine Nuts
Recipe from Martha Stewart

Coarse salt and ground pepper
2 medium tomatoes, diced
1 garlic clove, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
8 ounces angel-hair pasta
2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted if desired

Bring a large pot of water with salt to a boil. Meanwhile, combine tomatoes, garlic, and oil in a medium bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Let stand at least 10 minutes.

Cook pasta in boiling water until al dente; drain, and return to pot. Add tomato mixture, and toss to combine. Serve sprinkled with pine nuts.

Baked Barley Risotto with Butternut Squash
Recipe from Real Simple

tablespoons olive oil
small butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1-inch pieces (about 3 cups)
onion, finely chopped
Kosher salt and black pepper
cup pearl barley
1/2 cup dry white wine
cups low-sodium vegetable broth
ounces baby spinach
1/2 cup grated Parmesan (2 ounces), plus more for serving
tablespoon unsalted butter

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Heat the oil in a large oven-safe saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the squash, onion, ¾ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper and cook, stirring often, until the onion begins to soften, 4 to 6 minutes.

Add the barley to the vegetables and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the wine and cook, stirring, until evaporated, about 1 minute. Add the broth and bring to a boil; cover the pot and transfer it to oven. Bake until the barley is tender, 35 to 40 minutes.

Stir in the spinach, Parmesan, and butter. Serve with Parmesan.

Creamy Chicken and Spinach Pasta
Recipe from Real Simple

3/4 pound gemelli, penne, or short pasta
cup frozen peas
tablespoon unsalted butter
cloves garlic, chopped
cup heavy cream
cups shredded rotisserie chicken (about half of a 2- to 2 1/2-pound bird)
ounces baby spinach (about 6 cups)
Kosher salt and black pepper
Grated Parmesan, for serving

Cook the pasta according to the package directions, adding the peas during the last minute of cooking. Reserve ½ cup of the cooking water. Drain the pasta and peas and reserve the pot.

Melt the butter in the pasta pot over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook, while stirring, about 30 seconds.

Add the cream, chicken, spinach, and ½ teaspoon each salt and pepper and cook until the chicken is warmed through and the spinach is wilted, 2 to 3 minutes.

Add the pasta and peas and toss to combine, adding a little of the reserved cooking water as needed to loosen the sauce. Serve with the Parmesan.

Minestrone with Winter Greens
Recipe from Martha Stewart

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon tomato paste
2 cans (15.5 ounces each) cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 cup dry white wine, such as Sauvignon Blanc
1 large sprig sage
1 piece (2 ounces) Pecorino Romano, plus more, grated, for serving
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 ounces ditalini or other short, tubular pasta (1 cup)
4 cups shredded chicory, escarole, or kale
Red-pepper flakes, for serving

Heat a large pot over medium-high. Add oil and garlic; cook, stirring occasionally, until garlic is golden, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in tomato paste; cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add beans and wine; simmer, stirring occasionally, until liquid has thickened and wine has almost evaporated, about 4 minutes. Add 8 cups water, sage, and cheese; season with salt and black pepper. Simmer, partially covered, over medium-low 25 minutes.

Bring soup to a boil, stir in pasta, and cook until al dente according to package instructions, stirring occasionally. Add chicory; cook, stirring, just until wilted, about 1 minute. Serve, topped with grated cheese and red-pepper flakes.


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