Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Pasta with Goat Cheese and Basil Oil

This easy and lovely recipe is from Real Simple. I can’t make it lactose-free here, because I haven’t found lactose-free goat cheese yet, but those of you in Quebec can buy lactose-free goat cheese (Damafro brand). I didn’t have gemelli pasta, even though I love it, so I used what I had on hand. I took basil from my bush outside (it’s completely overgrown and is really more of a bush than a simple plant now). I’ve amended the recipe, though, because the 1 cup basil that is used as a topping should really be a very thin chiffonade, or shredded in very small pieces, otherwise it’s not all that pleasant to eat. The basil oil, though, is pure genius. I loved this dish, and the Engineer even declared that he actually liked the goat cheese in this pasta! Top with freshly cracked black pepper to serve.

12 oz gemelli or other short pasta (gluten-free if necessary)
3 cups fresh basil leaves, divided (2 cups as is, 1 cup cut into a thin chiffonade)
½ cup olive oil
4 oz crumbled lactose-free fresh goat cheese
kosher salt and black pepper

Cook the pasta according to the package directions; drain and return it to the pot.

Meanwhile, in a blender, purée 2 cups of the basil leaves with the oil until smooth; pour through a fine-mesh sieve and discard the solids.

Toss the pasta with the basil oil, goat cheese, the remaining 1 cup basil leaves, and season to taste.

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