No draining of pasta water here–the pasta and greens and cooked together in just enough water, risotto-like, until the pasta is done. If using tender greens like mizuna, spinach or chard, put them in towards the end of cooking.
2 T extra-virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 t crushed red pepper
1 T fresh chopped oregano, sage, tarragon, thyme…
4 c stock or water (stock, if possible), plus extra if necessary
1 large bunch greens, tough stems trimmed, coarsely chopped
2 c whole wheat pasta, such as orecchiette or penne
salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 c walnuts, toasted and chopped, and/or 1/4 c grated Parmesan
1. Combine oil, garlic, crushed red pepper, and chopped herb in a large pot; cook, stirring over medium heat until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add stock or water, pasta, and chopped greens. Increase heat to medium-high and bring to boil. Reduce heat some, not a lot, and cook, uncovered, at a steady boil, stirring occasionally, until the pasta is tender and most of the liquid is absorbed, 15 to 18 minutes. (You may need to add some more liquid if the pasta isn’t done and the liquid has been absorbed, but I’ve never had to.) Season with salt and pepper.
2. Serve in shallow bowls, sprinkled with toasted walnuts and/or Parmesan cheese.