2 cup whole-wheat penne
1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon olive oil, divided
1 clove garlic, minced
4 cup baby spinach, chopped
3 cup diced tomato, divided
1 tbs dried oregano (or any herb)
Pinch of salt
3/4 cup shredded low- fat cheddar cheese, divided
Directions: Preheat oven to 350 F. Cook pasta according to package directions until al dente. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a skillet over medium. Add garlic and stir until fragrant. Add spinach and 2 cups of tomato; cook for 4 minutes, until spinach wilts. In a medium bowl, combine remaining 1 cup of tomato, herbs, and salt. Transfer the cooked tomato mixture to the bowl and stir well. Add pasta to tomato mixture and combine thoroughly. Stir in 1∕2 cup of the cheese. Grease bottom of baking dish with remaining 1 teaspoon oil. Pour tomato pasta mixture into dish. Bake uncovered for 15 minutes, then remove from oven and sprinkle with remaining 1∕4 cup cheese. Bake until cheese melts, about 4 more minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving.
I liked the spinach chopped up to give for more even cooking. Do not overcook the spinach. When it starts to wilt, kill the heat. It will keep cooking. Instead of adding everything to a second bowl, I just used the dish I put in the oven to combine everything. Instead of oregano, I used Italian seasoning and fresh basil. Don’t skimp on these, the flavor is so much better with them.