This recipe has hit the internet and gone viral to the point that you can’t find a block of feta in the market. The reaction has been crazy. There are many versions of this recipe and I chose to go with Melissa Clark’s version because I think she’s just one of the best chefs out there and hers was the one pot version which is always a win win in my book. It couldn’t possibly be easier to make and ingredients are usually readily available, I had to hit 3 stores to find the feta ! Assuming you can get the feta this is a wonderful recipe and Joel gave it a 10. Perfectly vegetarian and perfectly yummy.
It is probably one of the richest pastas ever but the flavors were amazing. You will be using the pasta dry so no need to cook that separately .
Enjoy and Thanks to Melissa Clark @nytimescooking
1 8 oz. block of feta cheese
2 pints cherry tomatoes (leave whole)
5 cloves garlic, peeled and left whole — use 5 nice size cloves or a few more if small
Fresh Rosemary and Thyme– I used a few sprigs of thyme and a few sprigs of Rosemary — the Rosemary I removed from the stem the thyme I used sprigs. These are pretty strong herbs so you don’t want to use too much. Just enough to give it that wonderful flavor ( see photos) 12 ounces dried pasta–I used Orecchiette but any type of pasta will do — Farfalle pasta would also be perfect
Olive Oil– see Directions
3 cups boiling water
Kosher Salt — app. 1 teaspoon
*Crushed Red Pepper
Heat oven to 400 degrees
I sprayed a large baking dish with cooking spray first, then place feta, tomatoes, garlic and herbs in baking dish and I drizzled olive oil over cheese and tomatoes — just enough to lightly glaze the tomatoes and a little on the feta itself ( see photo)
Bake for 40 minutes till tomatoes and feta break down.
After 40 minutes, I removed from the oven and very carefully added the box of pasta , boiling water, teaspoon salt, and a few pinches of crushed red pepper* which of course is optional. Cover tightly with aluminum foil and return to oven for 18 minutes.
Remove from oven after 18 minutes, stir, then cover again and let sit for at least 10 minutes. I probably let it sit for 20 minutes because some of my pasta was still very hard. By the end of the 20 minutes it was perfect al dente and I mean perfect. It could be that I am at altitude so after 10 minutes check for the doneness of the pasta it should be al dente ( have some bite ) Also be careful of eating the whole garlic cloves unless you want to .
Served with a green salad and it got a 10 from Joel.