Penne with zucchini, peas and vegan feta cheese. I don’t always post my supper dishes, particularly if they’re pasta based because I think people might find them a bit boring to read about. However, I know that quick suppers are probably one of the most helpful recipes you can share, so here we are.
Pasta can guarantee you a speedy, nutritious and tasty supper and if you’ve had a busy day, sometimes this is all you want. Pasta dishes just tick all the boxes. And the more inspiration I can get for quick pasta dishes the better, so feel free to share your favourite recipe in the comments!
Yesterday, I asked myself, what do I want for supper? The reply was brief and swift: “Pasta”.
I like it when I prepare pasta because it generally means we will eat before 7pm. If I choose anything more complex, we’re lucky if we eat before 8pm.
Apart from pasta being quick, it is also a good way of using up the rubbery vegetables shoved to the back of the refrigerator drawer. I remembered that I had a couple of courgettes (or zucchini, if you will) that were well past their ‘freshly picked’ status and a small block of vegan feta cheese that was really reaching its limit in the fridge!
Aside from these two choice ingredients, some vegan Parmesan, a half empty bag of penne, a mushy onion and a handful of frozen peas also woefully resided in my kitchen. An evil plan started to form in my brain. How about pasta with feta cheese, courgette and frozen peas? All of the necessary food types in one pan!
And any fears I had of this being a little bland were quickly pushed to one side once I tried it. The feta cheese had added its familiar tang to the dish, the courgette chimed in with a yummy green bite, the peas threw in some pop-on-your-tongue sweetness for good luck and some sautéed onions and garlic tied the whole thing together with a big Allium bow.
What Kind of Vegan Cheese Can You Use?
I like to use Greek-Style (I like the Violife variety, available widely in UK supermarkets) and also vegan Goat-style cheese from La Fauxmagerie, vegan cheesemongers based in East London. They offer mail order options for their artisanal vegan cheeses, so this is not the cheaper option to use in this kind of dish. I had visited there so had some of their vegan-style herby goats cheese (comparable to the flavour of Boursin), and I used this. I would normally use the Violife Greek-style (Feta) cheese though.
Whatever cheeze you do decide to use, make sure it has a nice salty tang to it, needed to counteract the sweetness of the zucchini and peas.
I also have a feeling that this would be a great way to get vegetable loathing children to eat their greens, particularly if you use a fancy, child-friendly shaped pasta, like the bow-ties. You can also omit the feta cheese and use an alternative strong flavoured cheese, like cheddar or just parmesan all the way.
Other Ways to Serve my Penne with Zucchini, Peas and Vegan Cheese Recipe
- Fry up some vegan bacon and add this to the dish (but I think it would spoil the herby good-naturedness of the vegetables, turning into something a bit more decadent and, yes, fattening). But why not go the whole (vegan) hog, and just add the fried up bacon, and pour over a little plant-based cream to make it even more unctuous.
- Try Asparagus, Broad Beans or Green Beans instead of Peas
- Use your favourite shape pasta
Try my other delicious vegan supper dishes
- 200 g (2 cups) Penne dried
- 1 Onion small, peeled, halved and sliced thinly
- 1 clove Garlic minced
- 1 tablespoon Olive Oil
- 150 g (1 cup) Feta vegan, or vegan goat-style cheese
- 200 g (1½ cups) Courgette topped, tailed and cut into roughly 1cm cubes
- 50 g (⅓ cups) Frozen Peas
- 150 ml (⅗ cups) Soy mik or plant based cream, unsweetened
- 50 ml (¼ cups) White Wine (optional but it does add a great dimension to the dish)
- 2 tablespoon Basil
- Salt and Pepper or parsley, roughly chopped or torn
- Cook the pasta according to the instructions on the packet, but leave it a little al dente. Drain, reserving a few tablespoons of the cooking liquor. Lightly oil the pasta and place to one side.
- Heat the olive oil gently in a sauté pan and cook the sliced onion until soft.
- Add the courgette and minced garlic, and fry gently until the courgette starts to turn translucent. Season lightly.
- Crumble in the feta cheese and then add the pasta stirring well to combine.
- Pour over the milk, white wine and pasta cooking liquor and bring to a rapid boil. You are aiming for most of the liquid to cookoff, leaving a light coating on the pasta. This should take no longer than 5minutes.
- Remove from the heat, taste for seasoning and adjust as necessary. Stir in the basil or parsley
- Serve in large, deep bowls sprinkled with a little vegan parmesan if you like