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Lemony Feta Pasta

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dinners, Recipes

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In reflecting on the viral recipes of 2021, we decided that there are a couple we actually like — that are worth making into the new year. The famous viral Feta Pasta of 2021 is one of them, and so we’ve made it as family friendly as possible.

The Didn’t I Just Feed You version of Feta Pasta is designed to be a crowdpleaser base that you can serve as is or on which you can endlessly riff. It contains cream cheese to help make the sauce both creamier and more mild, allowing the garlic and lemon flavors to shine. We finish with sumac and pepper flakes (Aleppo pepper, if you have it!) for a little extra tang and bite, but they aren’t necessary, especially for the kids. You can finish with fresh herbs, frozen peas, or (highly recommended) toasted breadcrumbs. 

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Lemony Feta Pasta: The DIJFY version of the viral Feta Pasta recipe, made as family-friendly as possible

Lemony Feta Pasta


  • Author: Didn’t I Just Feed You
  • Prep Time: 5
  • Cook Time: 35
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4 to 6

Description

Our version of 2021’s viral Feta Pasta is designed to be a crowdpleaser base that you can serve as is or on which you can endlessly riff. It contains cream cheese to help make the sauce both creamier and more mild, allowing the garlic and lemon flavors to shine. We finish with sumac and pepper flakes (Aleppo pepper, if you have it!) for a little extra tang and bite, but they aren’t necessary, especially for the kids. You can finish with fresh herbs, frozen peas, or (highly recommended) toasted breadcrumbs.


Ingredients

2 pints cherry tomatoes, washed
4 whole garlic cloves
1/2 cup olive oil
Juice of 1 lemon, divided
1 1/2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt
Black pepper
8 ounce block of Feta cheese
4 ounces cream cheese (1/2 of an 8 ounce block)
1 lb your favorite cut pasta, such as penne
Pepper flakes, for topping (optional)
Sumac, for topping (optional)
Fresh herbs, such as thyme, oregano, or basil, for topping (optional)
Toasted breadcrumbs, for topping (optional)
 

Instructions

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Add the tomatoes, garlic cloves, olive oil, juice of 1/2 a lemon, salt, and pepper to an oven safe baking dish. Using your hands or a silicone spatula, toss to coat everything well. Nestle the block of feta and cream cheese in the middle of the dish. 

2. Place baking dish in the oven and cook for 35 min. In the meantime, cook the pasta according to package directions, being sure to reserve 1 cup of the cooking water before draining. 

3.  Remove the tomatoes and cheese from the oven. Using a silicone spatula, mash down the cheese and stir until a sauce forms. Add approximately 3/4 cup of the pasta cooking water and the juice of the remaining 1/2 of lemon. Stir some more: you can always add the final bits of pasta cooking water to help you make the sauce as creamy as possible, though be aware that the level of creaminess achieved will depend, in part, on the type and quality of Feta. Also, don’t worry about the sauce getting too thin: it will thicken up once the pasta is added, and you can always return the sauce to the heat to help thicken it if need be.
 
4. Add the cooked pasta to the sauce and stir to coat. Taste and adjust the salt and pepper, as desired. Serve as is or top with pepper flakes, sumac, fresh herbs, and/or toasted breadcrumbs. 

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