Friday, February 24, 2012

Sun Dried Tomato Roasted Garlic Pasta

I can tell you right now that one of the very first sections to fill completely up with all 7 recipes will be the pasta section.  I adore pasta, creamy pasta, red sauce pasta, pasta with veggies, etc.  It's comforting, tasty and filling.  A funny little story. . . I shop mostly at Walmart because I live in a tiny town and don't have many options, plus, its cheaper!  I was making one of my weekly visits to Walmart to get groceries.  I was standing in the pasta isle, I was kind of spaced out.  My 9 month old was getting cranky and I couldn't quite concentrate on what I needed to purchase as far as pastas went.  As I stood there I watched about 4 or 5 other shoppers pass by, they quickly grabbed the Walmart brand of pasta and then rushed off again.  Now to the funny part of the story, as I stood there wondering what I needed to buy I kept going over the prices of the pastas. . . did you know that Barilla pasta is cheaper than the Walmart brand?  At least it was at my Walmart (in Cedar City, UT) on the day I was there.  So I bought several different kinds of pasta, all Barilla brand.  Next time you are shopping check to see if your store brand is more expensive.  I think we are just trained to think that because it's a store brand it's cheaper. . . crazy isn't it?

Sun Dried Tomato Roasted Garlic Pasta

2 heads garlic
3 teaspoons olive oil, divided
1 cup sun dried tomatoes, chopped (I have homemade ones but store bought sun dried tomatoes in olive oil will work too)
1 cup sliced crimini mushrooms
1 jar of Alfredo sauce (either your favorite store brought or homemade)
4 servings mini penne pasta, cooked per package instructions

1. Roast garlic: preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Cut tops of garlic heads off to expose the garlic cloves.  Place garlic heads on a sheet of aluminum foil, cut side up, drizzle with 1 teaspoon of olive oil.  Wrap foil around garlic head and place in oven for approximately 35-40 minutes.  Allow to cool.
2. In a large skillet heat 1 teaspoon of olive oil, add tomatoes, mushrooms and roasted garlic cloves (you should be able to squeeze the cloves out of the head of garlic fairly easily).  Sauté for about 8 minutes, or until mushrooms are softened.  Add Alfredo sauce to skillet and heat through.  Add cooked pasta to skillet, mix thoroughly and serve.

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