Monday, October 4, 2010 at 2 p.m.
We went up to Northern Arizona this weekend where we went to a car show, a quilt show, and drove through Oak Creek Canyon. To eat we had chimichangas, cheeseburgers, tacos, and some big slices of chocolate cake. It was fun, but now it's time to take it easy and eat some vegetables.
To make this dish, you begin by roasting the vegetables: 2 pints grape tomatoes, 4 garlic cloves (unpeeled), 3 shallots, and 2 Tablespoons fresh thyme leaves. Place them on a baking sheet and toss with extra-virgin olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. Roast them in a 450 oven for 20-25 minutes. (We found the oven temperature a little too hot, our thyme was beginning to smoke, so we adjusted it to 380).
In a large pot of boiling water cook 8 oz. of Rigatoni pasta al dente. When it's time to drain the pasta, reserve ¼ cup of pasta water, then drain and return pasta to pot.
Next peel roasted garlic and mash. Add this to the pot along with vegetables, 1/3 cup chopped and pitted olives, and the pasta water. Cook over medium heat until the sauce thickens - about 3 minutes. Finally toss in three cups of baby arugula.
This pasta dish was pretty tasty, especially the roasted vegetables, and certainly easy enough. We also love the peppery arugula. Next time we are adding more garlic for sure. We also added a ½ cup or so of butter beans to our dish for variety. But best of all, lunch is packed and ready to go.