Mother Earth Living

Food Matters

All about fresh, flavorful food

Add to My MSN

The Lazy Gourmet: Orecchiette Pasta with Goat Cheese, Peas and Mint

12/19/2011 4:29:59 PM

Tags: Orecchiette Pasta, The Lazy Gourmet, Mint, Robin Donovan, Juliana Gallin, Recipes, Pasta, Spring Pasta

The Lazy Gourmet authorsRobin Donovan and Juliana Gallin are the authors of The Lazy Gourmet: Magnificent Meals Made Easy —a hip, fun, and practical guide to cooking strikingly sophisticated, yet surprisingly simple dishes. You can visit the authors’ blog Two Lazy Gourmets, like them on Facebook, and follow them on Twitter.  

The winter weather is putting a damper on my mood. Last night, in a desperate attempt to lighten things up, I cooked up this quick pasta dish that celebrates spring. This Orecchiette Pasta with Goat Cheese, Peas and Mint is a variation of a pasta dish with asparagus and goat cheese that appears in The Lazy Gourmet: Magnificent Meals Made Easy. While we considered including a variation with fresh spring peas in the book, we nixed the idea thinking that shelling peas would be too time-consuming for the average Lazy Gourmet, but when I ran across a bag of shelled fresh peas at the market the other day, I just couldn’t resist. Besides, you can always substitute frozen peas, which are almost as delicious as fresh.

Orecchiette Peas Mint Chevre 12-19-2011
This dish can be tossed together in less than 30 minutes for a quick weeknight meal.
Photo courtesy
Two Lazy Gourmets 

Orechiette Pasta with Goat Cheese, Peas and Mint
From The Lazy Gourmet: Magnificen Meals Made Easy (Viva Editions, 2011)

This is a dish that can easily be tossed together in less than 30 minutes for a quick weeknight meal. I blanch the peas right along with the pasta, throwing them into the boiling water with two or three minutes to go. The leeks are sliced and sautéed as the pasta cooks, and then the cheese, butter and cream (or half-and-half or milk) are added to the same pan. A drizzle of the pasta-water and a brief simmer are all it takes to create the delectable sauce. A last-minute addition of minced fresh mint adds a fresh, herby note and a sprinkling of toasted pine nuts a nice toothsome crunch. SERVES 4 TO 6

• 2 tablespoons olive oil
• 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
• 2 medium leeks (white and pale green parts only), trimmed, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
• 1 pound dry orechiette or other short pasta
• 10 ounces shelled peas
• 5 ounces fresh goat cheese
• 1/2 cup heavy cream, half-and-half or whole milk
• Zest and/or juice of 1 lemon (optional)
• 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint
• 2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts
• Freshly grated Parmesan for serving (optional)

1. Set a large pot of salted water over high heat to boil for pasta. Once the water comes to a rapid boil, add the pasta.

2. While the pasta is cooking, heat the olive oil and butter in a large, heavy skillet, over medium-high heat, until the butter is melted and oil is hot. Add the leeks and cook, stirring until soft about 3 to 5 minutes.

3. About 3 minutes before the pasta is done, add the peas to the boiling water. When pasta and peas are done, reserve 1 cup of the cooking water and drain in a colander.

4. To the skillet with the leeks, add the goat cheese, salt, and cream, half-and-half or milk, and cook, stirring frequently, until the cheese is melted. Add lemon zest and/or lemon juice, if using, pasta, and peas and cook, stirring, until well combined. If you like a creamier consistency, add a little of the reserved pasta water or more half-and-half or cream. Stir in the chopped mint. Taste, and add additional salt and pepper if needed. Serve immediately, garnished with toasted pine nuts and freshly grated Parmesan, if desired. 



Related Content

Mother Earth News Radio: Make Simple Pasta

I offer instructions on how to make a very basic pasta.

Love Your Basil: New Year Black-Eyed Pea with Lettuce Leaf Basil Pie

In the South we bring in the new year eating black-eyed peas. You should try my pie—it might even br...

Sweet Pea Soup

This simple and delcicious spring soup is sure to be a favorite among kids and adults!

How to Make Ricotta Cheese

Learn how to make ricotta cheese with guest blogger Pier Jones. For the beginner cheesemaker, ricott...

Content Tools




Post a comment below.

 

MY COMMUNITY
no image
valerykenery
8/29/2014 12:04:10 AM
no image
HarvestRight
8/21/2014 5:22:39 PM
no image
NatureHillsNursery
8/20/2014 10:03:07 AM
no image
NatureHillsNursery
8/20/2014 9:59:22 AM
no image
NatureHillsNursery
8/20/2014 9:30:07 AM
no image
melisastarr
8/19/2014 12:57:22 PM
no image
Peggy McMahan
8/18/2014 11:29:51 AM


Subscribe today and save 58%

First Name: *
Last Name: *
Address: *
City: *
State/Province: *
Zip/Postal Code:*
Country:
Email:*
(* indicates a required item)
Canadian subs: 1 year, (includes postage & GST). Foreign subs: 1 year, . U.S. funds.
Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
Non US and Canadian Subscribers - Click Here

Subscribe to Mother Earth Living!

Welcome to Mother Earth Living, the authority on green lifestyle and design. Each issue of Mother Earth Living features advice to create naturally healthy and nontoxic homes for yourself and your loved ones. With Mother Earth Living by your side, you’ll discover all the best and latest information you want on choosing natural remedies and practicing preventive medicine; cooking with a nutritious and whole-food focus; creating a nontoxic home; and gardening for food, wellness and enjoyment. Subscribe to Mother Earth Living today to get inspired on the art of living wisely and living well.

Save Money & a Few Trees!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. You’ll save an additional $5 and get six issues of Mother Earth Living for just $14.95! (Offer valid only in the U.S.)

Or, choose Bill Me and pay just $19.95.