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recipe with potential, but not quite there...

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I'm working on a pasta recipe that isn't quite finished. The ingredients are spinach, lentils, garlic, leeks, to be served within a dish of pasta.

I tried thyme, and though it wasn't bad, it wasn't good, or wasn't enough by itself to accent these ingredients. Any ideas? Rosemary maybe?

Thank you so much in advance!

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  1. How exactly do you make it? Offhand, something with a little acidity would probably be a good bet, but it would be easier to troubleshoot if you detail how you make the dish beyond just listing the ingredients.

    1. I might add chopped tomatoes (or chopped diced canned depending on your growing season) along with the thyme. But if I did that I might leave out the leeks.... kind of like a lentil soup flavor to the sauce. I don't' know if you want to change the recipe that much, but that is what came to mind.

      1. Sounds like something that is crying for pitted chopped Kalamata olives. . . ..

        1. I might try adding a little bit of cumin and some lemon juice, slowly, tasting to see if you should add more.

          1. I agree about adding acidity- or something spicy, or sweet, or umami, or some combination therein. Maybe sriracha, dried fruit, or truffle salt. A splash of sherry if you have some. I like bits of browned sausage or crispy bacon in my lentils, if you aren't vegetarian. I also think the garlic and leeks should be sauteed.

            1. If you want vegetarian suggestions, you'll get more appropriate responses on the V&V board.
              Nuts are a possibility.

              Otherwise, I would aim for a thinned-out creamed spinach that includes parmesan or a blue cheese. Combine it with lentils cooked to whatever consistency you prefer, from al dente to mush. To that, I'd add julienned salami sauteed to render it thoroughly. I'd use that fat to saute the garlic and leeks.

              1. Olive oil
                Freshly ground pepper (lots)
                Lemon Juice
                Touch of white wine
                I like to sub escarole for spinach these days, but I do like spinach
                And Butter
                And a little more butter
                Fresh Sage
                Hit it with Romano at the end.
                And don't forget the butter.
                If you can find some scapes...

                1. Is this a pasta salad or a hot dish? It's served "within" pasta (as a side or topping) and not combined with the pasta? You need some olive oil and chopped onion in there someplace.
                  greygarious makes a good point. If this is a vegetarian recipe you'd be better served by posting it at:

                  1. thanks everyone!
                    to be exact, leeks are sauteed, then combined with lentils and garlic, cooked a bit, then mixed in with ww pasta. It was good--but like I said, just not there. I think it's a good basis, though, and wanna flavor it up.

                    I'm going to work with many of your suggestions--thinking about sun dried tomatoes, tomatoes, olives, lemon juice, and truffle salt.

                    again, thanks so much for the inspiration!!