I was excited to hear about a recipe contest with the theme Cheesy Pasta, hosted by 20 minute supper club. This is my opportunity to share my recent favourite cheesy pasta recipe: pesto goat cheesy pasta. I've made it a couple of times with great success. Goat cheese makes for a very creamy sauce and the pesto add that wonderful basil flavour. I love the Giada de Laurentiis tip (I think she might have mentioned it is from her grandfather) to add cheese to hot pasta before adding the sauce. So extra Parmesan brings up the cheesy-ness to another level! It's also SO easy and quick. You can pretty much whip up the sauce while you're cooking the pasta.
Pesto Goat Cheesy Pasta - Serves 4
This dish can be customized to anyone's taste. You can have the pasta on its own, add vegetables or top with a protein like shrimp or chicken. Whatever you like will work.
* pasta of your choice (I like penne or rotini)
* ½ cup pesto, store-bought or homemade
* 200 g goat cheese (set aside as garnish)
* ¼ cup Parmesan, grated (or more to taste)
* vegetables/protein of your choice (see below for ideas)
* sun-dried tomatoes, sliced (optional)
In a large pot of salted boiling water, cook pasta following the directions on the package.
In a large saucepan, combine pesto, goat cheese and ¼ cup of pasta water.
Cook on low heat and stir until it turns into a creamy consistency, adding more pasta water if too thick.
Those are frozen cubes of pesto in which I forgot the garlic. That's why you see garlic on top!
Once the pasta is cooked al dente, add the pasta to the saucepan, using a slotted spoon.
Top the pasta with a handful of Parmesan and mix through.
Repeat until you have used up all of your cheese (and add more if you'd like!).
Now, mix the pasta into the sauce until the pasta is well coated.
Mix in the vegetables of your choice and sun-dried tomatoe.
Garnish with goat cheese.
For sautéed vegetables
* ½ small onion, sliced
* vegetables of your choice (mushroom, zucchini, asparagus)
* salt and pepper, to taste
* Italian seasoning, to taste
* red hot chili flakes (optional)
In a large saucepan, heat oil on medium heat.
Add onion and cook until softened.
Add the mushrooms, zucchini and asparagus.
Season with salt, pepper, Italian seasoning and red hot chili flakes.
When the vegetables are cooked through, set aside in a bowl.
Other variations on a theme:
* Eggplant and Chickpeas
* Corn, Sun-dried Tomatoes and Garlicky Shrimps
* Yellow Squash, Asparagus & Sun-dried Tomatoes
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