A rich and creamy pasta dish with a delicious feta and roasted mushroom sauce
Who doesn’t love a good trend? We sure do! Whether it was the stirrup pants that were hot items in our teenage wardrobe, or the crimped hair and teased bangs that drew attention to (or away from) our blue shadowed eyes, we appreciate a good thing when we see it! But trends come and go, and sometimes that’s a good thing! Fashions evolve, and even food trends change with the times. You would be hard pressed to find a gelatin salad on a modern dinner table, but there was a time that these colourful, molded
atrocities delights were the centerpieces of any successful party.
There are some trends however that we think will stick around for a very long time, maybe forever! You may have seen the viral baked feta and pasta recipe that was shared on Tik Tok; this recipe posted by Jenni Hayrinen, a Finish food blogger. The recipe became so popular that Finland experienced a country-wide shortage of feta as everyone scrambled to make this easy, and delicious dish. Since then this recipe, in its many variations, has been tried by perhaps every single person who has access to feta in the world, including us.
We were not surprised by how good the recipe for the viral baked feta pasta was. Greeks have been baking feta and combining it with tomatoes and olive oil and other good stuff forever. Recipes like our warm feta packages and our baked feta combine delicious Greek feta, tomatoes, olives, olive oil and herbs, and the results are phenomenal!
Inspired by the baked feta pasta trend, we started to ponder alternatives to the original recipe. Loving the flavour and richness of roasted mushrooms, we decided to make them the co-star, along with the cheese, of our version of baked feta pasta. This recipe requires a little more work than the tomato based recipe does; here you have to wash and thoroughly dry the mushrooms before cutting them up, and we ask that you cut up some onions, garlic and olives – but that’s really the extent of the extra work and it is so very worth it. We hope that you give our not-yet-viral-but-maybe-one-day-famous baked feta and mushroom pasta recipe a try!
What variety of mushrooms work best in this baked feta and mushroom recipe?
Any mushrooms will work great but we think that it is ideal if you use at least 3 different types. We particularly like the inclusion of the portabello mushrooms as their meaty texture gives a nice richness to the dish. The important thing to keep in mind is that the mushrooms will shrink after they roast, so you don’t want to cut them too small to start with. We cut the mushrooms into slightly larger pieces than we want to end up with, and this works out just fine.
Are you supposed to wash mushrooms or simply wipe them clean?
Honestly, we have no idea. We have heard that the correct way to clean mushrooms is to wipe them with a damp cloth in order to remove the dirt that may be on them. We’ve tried this but find that it takes a long time! Instead, we run the mushrooms quickly under cold running water and then we dry them thoroughly using paper towels or a clean kitchen towel. We’ve even used a salad spinner to remove excess moisture -this works out very well.
We imagine that the reason not to wash mushrooms is because they are so porous and sometimes delicate that that can absorb the water and their texture will be ruined. Truly, we haven’t found this to be a problem. Regardless, whether you choose to wipe or wash, just be sure that your mushrooms are clean.
Can I use a smaller roasting pan than the one you recommend in the recipe?
The reason we use a 9 x 13 inch roasting pan is because this allow us to spread the mushrooms out in a mainly single layer. This is very important so that the mushrooms can caramelize and roast instead of steaming (which is what would happen if they were piled all together).
What type of feta should be used in the baked feta and mushroom pasta recipe?
Greek feta is ideal. Greek feta is made of either sheep or goat’s milk and will result in a creamier sauce when you mix all of the ingredients together (to say nothing of the far superior taste!). Non-Greek feta (like Canadian feta) is often made with cow’s milk and although this is a cheaper option, the taste is not nearly as good and you will also end up with a somewhat gritter sauce (so not as creamy).
Can I use any pasta shape in this recipe?
Absolutely! Use any shape or variety of pasta that you prefer and simply cook it according to the package directions. You can even use gluten-free pasta to make this a gluten-free meal.
This recipe calls for green olives. Can I substitute the green olives for something else?
Sure! We love the flavour and texture of the green olives and how they pair nicely with the mushrooms, feta and other ingredients. However, you can use a different type of olive if you like (check out our post on olives here). Alternatively, if you would rather not use olives at all, capers would be a great substitute.
Do you love easy pasta dishes? You’re in luck, because we’ve got these for you to try as well:
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