Florentine Vegetable Sauce with Penne


  • 2 carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock or vegetable stock
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, grated
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • 1 can crushed tomatoes (28 ounces)
  • A few leaves fresh basil, torn
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 bunches spinach, chopped
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • Nutmeg, to taste
  • Shaved Parmigiano Reggiano cheese


Fill a medium saucepot with water and place over high heat. Bring to a boil and season with salt. Drop the carrots into the boiling salted water and cook until tender. Drain them and place into a blender or food processor. Add the stock and puree.

While the carrots are cooking, fill a large pasta pot with water and place over high heat. Once the water comes to a boil, add some salt and drop the penne. Cook to al dente, according to the package directions.

While the pasta is cooking, in a large skillet over medium-high heat, sauté the onion and garlic with some EVOO until the onion becomes soft and translucent. Stir in the pureed carrots along with the tomatoes, basil, salt and pepper. Wilt the spinach into the skillet with the carrot mixture, then stir in the heavy cream. Season with some grated nutmeg. Let the veggie mixture reduce over medium-low heat until thick. It should have a sauce-like consistency.

Add the cooked penne to the skillet and mix until combined. Served topped with some shaved Parmigiano Reggiano cheese.

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