Easy One Pot Pasta and Sourdough Bread

by Lauren Matthies


A long time ago I saw a recipe for one pot pasta.  I was intrigued and decided that I needed to try it.  Well, years later, I finally attempted my own one pot pasta, and it made me realize that I've been missing out.  

This pasta is so easy and tasty; if you haven't already tried something similar, please don't let years go by like I did.

You literally just put it all in one pot.  Cover and cook (stirring occasionally) and you're good to go!  I promise the noodles will cook, don't worry.

Feel free to adjust the spices as you like.  I just toss them in based on how I'm feelings.  You can get a gist for the amounts I used in the pictures and in the recipe below.  It definitely had a kick to it, so if you don't want so much spice, omit or use less of the crushed red pepper.

It was hard to get a picture of it after it cooked because there was so much steam.  I promise it looked prettier in real life.

To get in some more veggies, I also sauteed some spinach.  To do this, I put the spinach in a pan and covered it with a lid to create steam.  Stir occasionally so it doesn't burn and you're set.  It's really easy.  You may want to spray your pan with cooking oil beforehand.  And remember, the spinach will shrink significantly once cooked so start with more spinach than you think you'll need.

 

Then, pour the spinach in the pasta and stir.

Enjoy!  

I also made some sourdough bread to go with our pasta.  This time, I also added some yeast and increased the hydration in an effort to make it less dense.  What resulted was french loaf like bread that both my husband and I enjoyed.

I used this King Arthur's recipe for my inspiration, and I did not realize that when they said "thin baguettes" that they meant normal sized baguettes.  My bread loaves were huge and overflowed the baguette pan resulting in an odd shape.  Even oddly shaped, however, they were delicious.  I froze the two we didn't eat by wrapping them in plastic wrap and aluminum foil then putting them in a garbage bag (my ziplock bags weren't big enough) in the freezer.  I used them later by letting them thaw for a while in their wrapping and then reheating them in the oven at 350 degrees.

Make the dough, let it rise, and punch it down.

The recipe I cited above gives good directions on how to form the baguettes.  Again, like I said above, using three loaves made for loaves not really baguettes.  They're a good size, but don't use a baguette pan like I did unless you break the dough into six baguettes.

If you do...you get this.

I put aluminum foil under then while they baked because otherwise they would be touching the oven rack.

Good thing they don't rise anymore in the oven.

Here's the problem, they were undercooked at spots where they were touching and then overflowing the baguette pan.

So, I flipped it upside down and cooked it in the oven on the aluminum foil for a little longer.

You'll see that the two outer baguettes resulted in a funny shape, but it still tasted good.  Next time I'll try it with six baguettes, and if I prefer the larger loaves, I'll skip the baguette pan.

Recipes

One Pot Pasta

Ingredients:

  • 6 oz capellini pasta
  • 28oz can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
  • 2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon oregano
  • 1 tablespoon basil
  • 1.5 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 cup sauteed spinach
  • Parmesan cheese, optional

Instructions:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a large pot.
  2. Cover and bring to a boil.
  3. Reduce to a simmer and cook (covered) for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Add sauteed spinach and stir.
  5. If desired, garnish with Parmesan cheese.

Sourdough Bread

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 cups lukewarm water
  • 2 cups sourdough starter
  • 5 cups bread flour
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
  • Olive oil to grease bowl

Instructions:

  1. In the bowl of a standing mixer, combine all ingredients and knead with a dough hook for 7 minutes.
  2. Place the dough in an oiled bowl, cover, and let rest for 90 minutes, until doubled in size.
  3. Punch down the dough and divide into 3-6 pieces.
  4. Form dough pieces into baguettes.
  5. Cover and let rest for 1 1/2 hours.
  6. Bake at 450 degrees for 25 minutes, until golden brown.