June 21, 2012

Simple Summer Pasta with Fresh Corn, Feta and Basil

It's officially summer as of yesterday, and I happen to be in Austin, Texas at the moment where the thermometer reads exactly 100°. It's quite hot. 

I'm at the end of a road trip which has taken me from Boston, to New York City, Detroit, Ann Arbor, Chicago, Des Moines, Kansas City, Dallas and Austin. Traveling through America by car always produces some good eats, and this road trip has been no exception. I'll update y'all (I've adopted a southern accent now that I'm in the South - they tell me I can't pull it off, but I persist nonetheless) on the road trip soon enough. But for now I didn't want to leave you without a recipe that you'd better get to making as soon as you can get your hands on some fresh corn. It's summer - there's no better time to cook!

In fact, this is my favorite summer pasta to make. It uses a bit of dairy to thicken it up, but it's a light vegetable dish composed of a few simple flavors - feta, corn and basil - that sing with the first days of summer. I made it at home in Boston right before I drove off for this trip, and despite the delicious food I've been finding across the country, I've been thinking about it ever sense. It's one of those dishes that sticks with you, and I plan on making it all summer long. 

Whether you're in Austin or Boston (they rhyme), welcome to summer and happy cooking!

Pasta with Fresh Corn, Feta and Basil
Serves 4

-2 tablespoons olive oil
-2 cups fresh corn kernels (about 3-4 ears)
-1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
-1/4 cup whole milk
-6 leaves fresh basil, thinly sliced 
-salt and pepper
-1 lb short pasta, cooked according to package

1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add the corn and saute for about 5 minutes until just cooked. Add the feta and milk, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook 2-3 minutes until feta is mostly melted. Remove from the heat, mix in basil and season with salt and pepper. 

2. Mix prepared sauce with cooked pasta and serve at once.