Leek is a classy kinda vegetable, the kind that should be featured more frequently in dishes like this Leek and Goats Cheese Pasta. A few years ago whilst reading 'French Women Don't Get Fat' it became obvious how much Leek's are beloved in France, apparently they are of noble status and they don't appear frequently enough in Western diets so this is an easy and super quick way to make a leek pasta dish for dinner.
The type of pasta used in this dish is called Mafalda and it was chosen because it’s like tagliatelle which is the most go-to in our house, along with the long thin pieces of leek the pasta is a great choice, however, you could definitely use your preferred pasta shape here…I would love to know what yours is in the comments below?
Pasta seems to be something that went from being barely ever eaten in my diet to a once a month ‘not just special occasions’ because, honestly speaking, it is just one of the best things to eat when it’s cold out and you don’t want bread as the carb of choice.
This pasta comes together quickly! Like in 20 minutes kinda quickly…the leeks are easy to finely slice, even if you aren’t fast at chopping and they cook in the time it takes to bring a large pot of water to the boil.
You could definitely serve this with a side of garlic bread and salad and it would be filling, though this also fed us well without any accompaniments.
Why you'll love this
Simple but classy
Leek is a soft but full bodied allium that makes for a simple dish that feels classy.
This dinner comes together quick, meaning if you have everything on hand you can make it in 20 minutes!
Ingredients for the Leek and Goats Cheese Pasta
- Leek: The base of our dish, this smooth allium gives a light, but full bodied flavor to our pasta. If you don't love leek, you could substitute with 6 finely sliced shallots or 10 finely sliced spring onions or scallions - whilst they won't produce the exact flavor, they are cousins of the leek so will give you the most similar result here.
- Garlic: The cousin of the allium this rounds out the flavor of the leek, but if you hate garlic you could simply leave out.
- Goats cheese: Tart and adding a level of acidity alongside those leeks this melty cheese is a great choice. If you hate goats cheese, you could subsitute with cream cheese.
- Pasta: Mafalda pasta is used here because of it's lovely edges, but fettucine, pappardelle or tagliatelle are all perfect substitutes.
- Cream: Heavy cream is best here, but pouring cream would also work alongside the melty goats cheese. I don't recommend substituting coconut cream as this would affect the flavor of the dish too intensely.
- Balsamic Vinegar and Mustard: These two are the flavor powerhouses that round out the dish - the balsamic vinegar adds necessary acidity which could be substituted with lemon juice. Mustard adds a light undertone complimenting the leeks and the cheese, however, is not essential if you don't have on hand or simply don't like mustard.
See recipe card for quantities.
FAQs for the best Leek and Goats Cheese Pasta
Do I have to add balsamic vinegar to the leeks?
The balsamic vinegar is added to bring out the flavors of the goats cheese and balance everything out, and it completes the meal in a really nice way. If you don't have balsamic vinegar on hand or simply don't like it, simply substitute with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice to obtain the acidity needed for this balance.
Do I need to peel that goats cheese skin before cooking?
This is simply left up to you, I chose to keep the skin of the goat’s cheese in this dish, however, it does not melt as evenly as the interior so there are small lumps of cheese (win win in my opinion) throughout the dish. It's not essential to keep the skin if you prefer a smooth and creamy texture, a pre dinner snack perhaps!
Can I substitute the goats cheese?
Definitely! Cream cheese works best in creating that melty smooth texture alongside those leeks here substituting in equal measure.
Does this leek and goats cheese pasta taste good cold?
Apparently the leek flavor is stronger when this is hot whereas the goats cheese flavor is stronger if you eat this cold (like Mr Brooks noted as someone who frequently eats leftovers cold).
More vegetarian dishes you’ll enjoy
How to make:
Place a large pot of water on high heat with 1 tablespoon of salt to boil.
Place the leeks, olive oil and garlic into a saucepan on medium heat with two tablespoons of water.
Cover and allow to reach a simmer, stirring intermittently, until the leeks are bright green.
Add the goats cheese and wholegrain mustard, cover and turn the heat down to low.
Add the mafalda pasta into the boiling salted water and cook according to packet instructions.
When you press on the goats cheese and it’s soft, break it with your spatula.
Add the balsamic vinegar and cream to the leeks and stir through.
Remove the cooked pasta from the heat and add into the leeks with tongs, stirring through until fully incorporated.
Place on your plate, sprinkle over a little parmesan and serve immediately.
Luxurious leeks and goats cheese come together for a perfectly spring pasta dish that you can have plated in 20 minutes.
2 leeks, halved and finely sliced lengthwise
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
150 grams / 5.3 ounces soft goats cheese
1 teaspoon wholegrain mustard
250 grams / ½ pound mafalda pasta
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
60 milliliters / ¼ cup cream
Parmesan to serve
Salt and pepper to taste
- Place a large pot of water on high heat with 1 tablespoon of salt to boil.
- Place the leeks, olive oil and garlic into a saucepan on medium heat with two tablespoons of water.
- Cover and allow to reach a simmer, stirring intermittently, until the leeks are bright green.
- Add the goats cheese and wholegrain mustard, cover and turn the heat down to low.
- Add the mafalda pasta into the boiling salted water and cook according to packet instructions.
- When you press on the goats cheese and it’s soft, break it with your spatula and
- Add the balsamic vinegar and cream to the leeks and stir through.
- Remove the cooked pasta from the heat and add into the leeks with tongs, stirring through until fully incorporated.
- Place on your plate, sprinkle over a little parmesan and serve immediately.
- Dig in!
Recipe by Roamingtaste
- Calories: 427 calories per serve