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Meatless Monday: Farmers’ Market Vegetables, Goat Cheese and Lemon Pasta

Posted Jul 11 2010 9:52pm

next_food_network_star
I’ve definitely tell I’ve been watching way too much Next Food Network Star because I find myself wondering what I would be like if I were a contestant.  How would I define my point of view?  What kind of product would I make to represent myself?  It may make me a dork, but I have been having WAY too much fun imagining.  While I may not know how I would approach every challenge, I do know what my secret ingredient would be – goat cheese.  I swear I cannot get enough of goat cheese recipes!  Tangy, creamy, and versatile, I incorporate it in just about everything – brownies , whoopie pies , cauliflower , maki – because in my mind just about everything is better with goat cheese.

Farmers' Market Vegetables, Goat Cheese and Lemon Pasta

One of my favorite ways to use it is as an easy no-cook pasta sauce, which is definitely appreciated as weather turns hot and humid.  I toss fresh goat cheese (chevre) in the food processor with lemon zest, lemon juice, white wine, and garlic scapes for an easy sauce that is tart and rich all in the same bite.

carrots and patty pan squashPaired with summer vegetables and whole wheat pasta it makes for an easy meatless weeknight meal that balances indulgence and healthfulness.    To make this extra easy you can even use some steamed or grilled veggies left behind from a meal earlier in the week.  I used steamed patty pan squash and carrots from the farmers’ market, but this would also be lovely with shelled peas, or asparagus.  No garlic scapes?  Chives or scallions would also be delicious.

Farmers’ Market Vegetables, Goat Cheese and Lemon Pasta
Adapted from Bon Appetit via Smitten Kitchen
Serves 4-6

Ingredients -8 ounces spiral-shaped whole wheat pasta
-4 ounces fresh goat cheese
-1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon peel
-2 tablespoons chopped garlic scapes (or alternatively chives or scallions)
-2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
-2 tablespoons white wine (optional)
-4 cups assorted steamed or grilled vegetables (I used carrots & patty pan squash)
-Salt and pepper to taste

Method:

Cook the pasta according to the package directions until al dente. While pasta is cooking, combine goat cheese, lemon peel, garlic scapes, lemon juice, and wine (if using) in a food processor. Process until smooth and well combined.

Once pasta is cooked, drain and return to the pot. Add the goat cheese mixture and vegetables along with salt and pepper to taste, and toss until well combined and all ingredients are coated with the sauce. Serve immediately.

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