Thursday, March 02, 2006

Cheesy Pasta That's Almost As Good As Sex

After writing about el cheapo mac and cheese, I remembered an old favorite, pasta spirals with gorgonzola cheese. My sister has the cookbook it's from too, so I went to the store and got some cheese and made this for my lunch. I forgot how wonderful this is! Lemon, garlic, green onions, and cheese make every bite a flavorful party in my mouth. The texture differences are good too. I gobbled as much of it as I could, with my toes curling and eyes rolling back in my head with each bite. Then I hid the leftovers and finished them for breakfast. It's. That. Good.

Everybody knows to buy good cheese in blocks, and to crumble, grate, or chop it yourself so that you get the most flavor from it, right? Okay then. Here we go with Fusilli with peas, carrots, garlic, and gorgonzola, from The Best 125 Meatless Italian Dishes.

Dried fusilli or other spiral pasta, 10 oz.
Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled, 3 oz.
Fresh lemon juice, 2 T.
Olive oil, 1 T.
Garlic, 3 cloves, minced
Salt, 1/8 t. or to taste
Pepper, to taste (freshly ground is best)
Carrot, diced small, 1 large
Peas, frozen or fresh, 8 oz.
Green onions, minced, 2
Lemon wedges, at least 1 per person

Bring lightly salted water to a boil in a large saucepan. Add pasta and cook until it's done to your liking, adding the diced carrot for the final 3-5 minutes of cooking time, and the peas for the final 2 minutes if fresh, or 1 minute if frozen.

While the pasta is cooking, mash together the cheese, lemon juice, oil, garlic, salt, and pepper until somewhat creamy but not smooth.

Before draining the cooked pasta, remove 1/4 C. of the cooking water and stir into the cheese mixture.

Drain the pasta, and immediately combine it with the cheese sauce and green onions in a warmed serving bowl. Toss until the cheese begins to melt. Serve very hot, on warmed plates, with extra pepper and lemon wedges.

The cookbook says this serves 4 people as a main course, but it won't if I'm one of those 4! If you want a vegetarian meal just add a good salad. To use this as a side dish, I like to grill chicken breasts in olive oil with a bit of garlic, and splash lemon juice on them too.

Wow - I think I just had an orgasm! (*blush*) This sounds AMAZING! And thanks for mentioning me in your el cheapo post (*gee, gosh, smile*)...I'm going to have to try that the end of this month when we're broke again! The mexican version sounds really yummy!
This is a dish I don't think I can ever get tired of. But then I don't get to eat it very often since hubby doesn't like blue cheese.
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