Creamy Feta-Lemon Penne With Asparagus

Creamy Feta-Lemon Penne With Asparagus


The secret to this springy pasta’s success? A tangy “cream” sauce made with rich Greek yogurt and salty feta that provides a bright contrast for the earthy, vegetal flavors of pan-fried asparagus.
  • Kosher salt
  • 8 oz. penne pasta
  • 2 tbsp. unsalted butter or extra-virgin olive oil
  • 8 oz. asparagus, trimmed, cut into 2" pieces
  • 1 large shallot, thinly sliced into rounds
  • 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • Finely grated zest of 1 medium lemon (about 2 tsp.), divided
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 (5.3-oz.) container plain Greek yogurt (preferably 5% fat or more)
  • 4 oz. feta (about 1 c.), crumbled into small pieces, plus more for serving
  • 3 tbsp. chopped fresh dill, divided
  • ¼ c. coarsely chopped toasted walnuts
  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta, stirring occasionally, until al dente according to package directions. Reserve 2 cups pasta water before draining.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium heat, melt butter. Add asparagus and shallot and cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly softened, about 1 minute. Add garlic and half of lemon zest; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until asparagus is bright green and tender and shallots are lightly caramelized, about 5 minutes more.
  3. Remove from heat and add pasta, yogurt, feta, 2 tablespoons dill, and remaining lemon zest, stirring to combine. Stir in pasta water a couple tablespoons at a time to thin sauce to desired consistency; season with salt and pepper.
  4. Divide pasta among plates. Top with walnuts, more feta, and remaining 1 tablespoon dill.

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