Wondering what to do with that plethora of summer herbs in your garden? Make this Pasta with Green Vegetables, Herbs, and Feta for the ultimate summer pasta dinner!
(This recipe for Pasta with Green Vegetables, Herbs, and Feta was originally published in July 2010, but was updated with new photos and content in 2019).
We're entering into that time of the season when everyone's herb gardens are exploding. OK, I don't even have an herb garden but in between my basil and mint plants, I'm being inundated with fresh herbs, too. And nothing makes me happier! But I absolutely hate wasting herbs or slowly watching my plants die, so at this time of year, I'm always looking for recipes that will help me utilize my plethora of fresh herbs (otherwise I'll just turn the whole basil plant into a bowl of pesto fit for freezing). This pasta with green vegetables, herbs, and feta (spotted on Epicurious) resulted in a super summery dish that was also light enough for a hot summer evening. Plus, now my mint plant isn't absolutely out of control.
PASTA WITH GREEN VEGETABLES, HERBS, AND FETA RECIPE
The other fabulous thing about this pasta recipe is that it's super easy to prepare, making it the ideal hot summer weeknight dinner. You will need to turn your stove on, but just to quickly blanch the asparagus and peas and to cook the pasta to al dente. Then turn it off and keep it off!
While the linguine is cooking, get out your food processor. If you don't have a food processor, I think a blender should do the trick. Add the basil, mint, olive oil, salt, pepper, and ½ cup of feta and pulse until all the herbs are chopped and everything is blended together.
You'll definitely want to dip your finger in to this "pesto" to sample it. Then add it to the bowl of blanched asparagus and peas (you should put about ½ cup of the pasta water in, too) and also add in the linguine, parsley, remaining feta, and scallions.
Toss it all together and marvel about how it looks just like summer in a bowl.
Despite the fact that there's so much delicious fresh produce out at this time of year, I sometimes have a difficult time getting vegetables into my dinner plan. I'm just horrible at planning side dishes and often prefer to just make a smoothie will kale, spinach, and chia seeds for my green veggies. But this dish really has it all in one! All of this green makes me so happy.
My favorite part of this pasta with green vegetables, besides all of the freshness, is the way the herb, oil, and feta mixture completely and perfectly coats each strand of linguine. Nothing left at the bottom of the bowl, but so much deliciousness on each strand of linguine.
This was delicious served warm, but guess what? I thought the leftovers were even better when served cold the next day! For that reason, I think this pasta with green vegetables and herbs would make for an awesome BBQ dish. Let's face it, nobody brings fresh vegetables to BBQs or summer parties and this is a great way to sneak a few in without feeling like you're forcing them upon partygoers (or at risk for bringing a dish nobody touches!).
I'm pretty sure summer was made for easy pasta dishes like this one.
And at the very least, I will be making another batch of that delicious basil and mint feta pesto and packing it up and freezing to enjoy throughout the long dark winter void of fresh herbs.
And in the meantime, something tells me I'm gonna have a tough time sleeping tonight knowing this pasta with green vegetables, herbs, and feta awaits me for lunch again tomorrow.
If you like this pasta dish, be sure to check out my Angel Hair Alfredo with Jalapeño and Pancetta or my Lemon Greek Tortellini Salad. If you're looking for more ways to use up those fresh herbs try this Pesto Potato Salad from Kalyn's Kitchen!
Pasta with Green Vegetables, Herbs, and Feta
- 1 lb. thin asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1 ½ inch pieces
- 1 cup frozen peas
- 1 lb. linguine
- 2 cups packed fresh basil leaves
- 1 cup packed fresh mint leaves
- ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- ¾ tsp salt
- ¾ tsp pepper
- 1 cup crumbled feta cheese, divided
- ½ cup coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley
- 3 scallions, thinly sliced
- Red hot pepper flakes, for topping
- Add asparagus to a large pot of well-salted water and cook until just tender, about 4 minutes. Transfer (using a slotted spoon) to a large heatproof bowl. Add peas to boiling water and cook for 2 minutes. Transfer to bowl with asparagus and add linguine to water. Cook until al dente.
- While linguine is cooking, add basil, mint, olive oil, salt, pepper, and ½ cup feta to the bowl of a food processor and pulse until all is pureed and combined. Add mixture to bowl with asparagus and peas.
- When pasta is done cooking, reserve ½ cup water before draining. Stir this water into the bowl with vegetables and then add pasta, parsley, scallions, and remaining ½ cup of feta to bowl and toss to combine.
- Serve in individual bowls with red hot pepper flakes and additional crumbled feta sprinkled over the top.
- Recipe adapted from Epicurious.