pasta with fresh greens, cherry tomatoes & roasted garlic

6-8 large cloves of garlic
1 teaspoon plus 1 tablespoon olive oil
salt to taste
1 red onion, sliced thin
1 yellow bell pepper, cut into long, thin slices
2 green onions, sliced on diagonal
1/4 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
1 pound uncooked riggatoni, penne, ziti or other short tubular pasta
2 bunches escarole or broccoli rabe, trimmed, cut into 1-inch ribbons
12 ripe cherry tomatoes, halved
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
Optional: 1-2 cups roast chicken, cut into strips
Fresh basil
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Freshly ground pepper

In a small baking pan in a 375 F oven, roast the garlic with 1 teaspoon olive oil until tender, about 12-15 minutes. Cool, peel and halve the cloves lengthwise. Bring a large pot of water to boil; add the salt. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion, pepper, pepper flakes, green onions and a sprinkle of salt. Cook, tossing, until the onion is crisp-tender. Add the garlic and cook 1 minute longer. Boil the pasta until partly cooked, 6-8 minutes. Add the escarole and cook about 5 minutes longer, or until the pasta and greens are just tender. Scoop out and set aside about 1 cup of the pasta cooking liquid. Thoroughly drain the pasta and escarole. Return the pasta and escarole to the pot over low heat. Add the saut?ed vegetables, tomatoes, nutmeg and optional basil. Add the optional chicken. Heat through, tossing and adding enough of the reserved liquid to moisten, as well as a sprinkling of grated cheese and pepper. Serve immediately. Serves 6. From USA Weekend, November 12-14, 1993.

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