Cavatappi resemble elongated elbow macaroni and are the perfect shape for this rich and creamy dish—the herbs, cheeses, and sliced artichoke hearts cling to the spirals. By using a combination of frozen artichoke hearts and fresh chives and mint, you can produce a fast and flavorful vegetarian meal in no time.
Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil over high heat. From the lemon, grate 1-1/2 tsp. of zest and squeeze 1 Tbs. of juice; set aside. Heat the butter and oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat until the butter has melted. Add the shallot and cook until just softened, about 3 minutes. Increase the heat to high and add the frozen artichokes, red pepper flakes, 1/2 tsp. salt, and 1/4 tsp. pepper. Cook until the artichokes are goldenbrown, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in 3 Tbs. of the chives, the mint, and the lemon zest.
Meanwhile, cook the cavatappi according to package directions until al dente. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup of the water. Return the pasta to the pot and stir in the mascarpone, goat cheese, pecorino, lemon juice, and 1/4 cup of the water until smooth. Gently stir in the artichoke mixture and add more water if necessary to moisten the pasta. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve sprinkled with the remaining chives and additional cheese.
Start the meal with simple Garden Lettuces with Garlic Chapons.
nutrition information (per serving):
Photo: Scott Phillips