So this recipe saved me last year when I made the decision to simplify week-day meals. Hey, no more Tuesday night paella with sangria! I had heard that it came from Tik Tok but truthfully I just googled it after hearing about it and found a good version of it right here. This is now a staple for weekends and weekdays it’s THAT yummy.
2 pt. cherry or grape tomatoes
1 shallot, quartered (I actually never used this)
3 cloves garlic, smashed
1/2 c. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
Pinch crushed red pepper flakes
1 (8-oz.) block feta
3 sprigs fresh thyme
10 oz. pasta
Zest of 1 lemon (optional but I used it and it’s fabulous)
Fresh basil, for garnish
Preheat oven to 400°. In a large ovenproof skillet or medium baking dish, combine tomatoes, shallot, garlic, and all but 1 tablespoon oil. Season with salt and red pepper flakes and toss to combine.
Place feta into center of tomato mixture and drizzle with remaining 1 tablespoon oil. Scatter thyme sprigs over tomatoes. Bake for 40 minutes, OR until tomatoes are bursting and feta is golden on top. (NOTES – check how it’s doing at the 30 minute mark as it can be quite done by then)
Meanwhile, in a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta until al dente according to package directions. Reserve ½ cup pasta water before draining.
To skillet with tomatoes and feta, add cooked pasta, reserved pasta water, and lemon zest (if using) and stir until combined. Garnish with basil.
You can whip this dish up in about 35 minutes total and it’s amazingly flavourful. This can be also converted very easily into a gluten-free and dairy-free entrée which is the version that I made.
The recipe comes from allrecipes.com which provides all the nutritional specs on the meal and which also has a very handy calculator that adjusts the recipe for however many people you are cooking for. Thanks allrecipes, this one is a keeper.
I based my ingredients on dinner for 2. Make sure to adapt the recipe using the ingredient calculator. The instructions are based on the original recipe which serves 8 (don’t worry, you do all the same things!).
1/4 (16 ounce) package farfalle (bow tie) pasta (I used Tinkyada brown rice spirals pasta)
6 scallops, rinsed and drained
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon dried minced garlic (I used 2 cloves fresh garlic)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
1-1/2 teaspoons dried basil (I used 2 tbsp freshly minced basil)
2 tablespoons and 3/4 teaspoon whipped butter (non-butter eaters can use Earth Balance Margarine….trust me it still tastes great!)
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook pasta in boiling water until al dente. Drain, rinse, and transfer to a large serving bowl.
Place scallops in a large bowl. In a small bowl, mix together 1/4 cup olive oil, lemon juice, 1 teaspoon garlic, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and the black pepper. Pour mixture over scallops. Arrange scallops in a single layer in a large baking dish or plate. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon basil over scallops so that only one side is sparsely coated with basil.
Heat a large skillet over medium-high, and melt one tablespoon of butter/Earth Balance in the pan. Place scallops basil-side down, and cook for about 3 to 4 minutes until dark golden brown. Turn scallops, and cook the other side.
In a small saucepan, melt remaining butter with 1/2 cup olive oil, 1 tablespoon basil, 1/2 teaspoon garlic, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
Toss pasta with butter and olive oil mixture. Divide pasta onto plates, and top with scallops.
Serve with a green salad and warm, fresh baguette! Now relax and enjoy:)
I usually make a version of this recipe every few weeks. It’s one of those last minute meals you can make when you don’t think you have anything in your house and then you scout around and before you know it you have instant, easy delicious pasta dinner!
Have fun with this recipe because you can adjust qty’s and substitutions to suit your taste.
1/4 cup roughly chopped toasted pecans (I’ve also used pine nuts)
1/4 cup chevre (or feta if you have it)
1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes roughly chopped
2 tbsp finely chopped basil
2 tbsp finely chopped parsley
salt and pepper to taste Drizzle with a little olive oil
Optional: I frequently add cooked prawns to this dish. Chicken eaters could probably add pieces of boneless chicken breast as well. I’m also a bit of a crazy garlic lady so I often throw in two cloves of finely minced garlic but raw garlic isn’t for everybody.
Boil pasta and set aside. Finely chop sun dried tomatoes, toasted pecans, parsley and basil. Add to pasta. Break up the chevre and add to pasta. Pan fry prawns and/or chicken and add to pasta. Mix it all up and serve with a yummy salad and some crusty bread.