Pasta with Spinach Peas Pesto and Bacon

Quick and easy dinner that I made the other night.  We had bought a bag of baby spinach which we love to sauté, and I was craving pasta.  So I decided to combine them into a quick and easy dinner.  I wanted to get some bacon flavor in there and since Michelle is a vegetarian I used Morning Star Farms Veggie Bacon Strips.  I used a Large Shell Pasta since all of the ingredients will be able to get inside them.

1 Package Large Shells – boil in salted water to package directions

1 bag of baby spinach

3 strips of Veggie bacon – cut into small chunks

peas – frozen or fresh

Pesto sauce

While the pasta is boiling start a large sauté pan over medium high heat, add some olive oil get it nice and hot then add in the bacon chunks and frozen peas.  Cook 2-3 minutes until the bacon gets a bit crispy and the peas are thawed.  Add a bit of unsalted butter and let it heat up then add the spinach.  Let this wilt down and keep it moving so it does not burn.  I finished it with a bit of salt and lemon juice.  Lower the heat to low then add in the Pasta and Pesto and toss it all together.  I added a a bit of the starchy pasta water and yet another pat of butter to make the sauce hold to the pasta a bit better.

I added a bit of crushed red pepper flakes to mine, I like the spicy.

Over dinner Michelle and I had the thought that adding some white beans to the sauté might make this even better – I will try that and report back