This is a quick and delicious vegetarian dinner that is full of Greek inspired flavors, perfect for any weeknight. The salty tang from the feta, the sweetness of the tomatoes and the nutty chickpeas all pair together to make for a hearty pasta dish. I was so happy to be able to walk into the yard and grab a fistful of our fresh oregano that has been growing like crazy, it gives it such a fresh and peppery taste to the flavors. I made this with gluten-free organic brown rice penne, but you can cook it with whatever your favorite pasta happens to be.
Penne with Chickpeas, Feta & Tomatoes
Adapted from Cooking Light, March 2010
8 ounces uncooked gluten-free penne (or if you aren’t gluten-free, regular penne)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup chopped shallots
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 (15-ounce) can organic low sodium chickpeas (garbanzo beans), rinsed and drained
3 cups halved cherry tomatoes
3 ounces crumbled feta cheese
1/3 cup fresh oregano leaves, chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
Cook pasta according to directions, drain in a colander, reserving 1/4 cup of the cooking liquid. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to the pan, make sure it coats the pan. Add shallots and garlic; sauté for 45 seconds, stirring constantly. Stir in chickpeas; sauté 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add tomatoes; sauté 2 minutes. Stir in pasta and reserved cooking liquid; cook 2 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Remove from heat and put in a serving bowl. Add feta, oregano, salt, lemon zest and pepper; toss to combine.