I've reached feverish levels of distraction. It's been going this way for quite some time. I think it's fair to say that the only thing that I can concentrate on lately is food and this little dance with death the economy is engaging in (in that order, naturally). I'm so distracted I haven't even voted yet. True story. But I will be voting before the end of the week. Cross my heart.
There's a lot going on in my life lately and I can't seem to keep it all straight. I am a consummate multi-tasker and over-scheduler... Not to mention a frequent loser of scheduling devices. I'm getting dates and times wrong for all manner of things. I've missed meeting up with friends because I don't know what day it is. I forget to pay bills and have even received disconnection notices from not one... no, not two, but three different companies. There's no good reason for this - it is simply because I forgot to pay. I've read half a book recently and still am no closer to understanding the plot than I was when I skimmed the back cover. I even drove to work the other day when I meant to drive to a friend's house. Synapses failing, left and right.
Clearly it's time to simplify, and I'm not currently willing to cut back on anything. Nope, nuthin'. Bills be damned! Last week, though, I did make a small effort to reign myself in a bit. I made dinner in under thirty minutes. I know. I KNOW!!! I'm sure, gauging by the recipes I've logged here to date, you can tell I'm no thirty minute dinner gal. Not that I have a problem with it... I just seem to want to complicate things. I like food. I like spending lots and lots of time with food. And if I'm going to cook it, I'd better love it. Because seriously, the pizza place down the street from my house makes an amazing slice, so if I want quick meal I'll go there.
Last week, though, I had to move my morning run to the evening. By the time I got home it was dark, I was dragging and more than anything I wanted to eat. Fortunately, I had the happiest quintet of ingredients (that would be arugula, cannellini beans, ricotta salata, walnuts and pasta) just waiting to be used. This pasta is fantastic. The flavors melded perfectly. And honestly, after a run this was close to the best food ever. It was the best blitz cooking experience I've had in long long time. Don't worry though, I've been working on a pie all day today. I'm in no way committed to cutting corners.
Pasta with Arugula, Walnuts and Ricotta Salata
Adapted from Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone by Deborah Madison
1 lb. pasta
4 Tbsp. olive oil
3 cloves garlic, crushed
3 pinches red pepper flakes
5 cups mature arugula leaves
1 cup toasted chopped walnuts
1 cup drained canned cannellini beans
3/4 c. ricotta salata
Cook pasta according to package directions. Be sure to salt the pasta water heavily. Meanwhile, heat oil in large skillet. Once warm add garlic and chili flakes. Cook until garlic turns light gold. Add the arugula, season with a few pinches of salt and saute until wilted. Turn off the heat and toss with walnuts and beans. Taste for seasoning.
Once pasta is cooked and drained toss it with the arugula mixture. Garnish with ricotta salata and a splash of olive oil to serve.