This creamy bow tie pasta dish with mushrooms and leeks is the perfect spring dinner. I’ll discuss how to cook the leeks in this blog post if you haven’t before!
We are getting there team! It’s May, finally! Very excited to reach, what feels like a milestone in it being May. Our stay at home order ends May 15th (tentatively) so an end is in sight.
This month also marks me being 32 weeks pregnant! Gah! Crazy that our baby will be almost full term by the end of the month. You will notice a bit of a slow down in the blog while I take maternity leave but I’ll still have some great recipes for you sprinkled along the way.
This creamy bow tie pasta recipe practically shouts spring. Have you guys ever cooked leeks before? They are in season now, here in the Midwest and they hold up well in a dish sautéed, braised, boiled or baked.
Leeks and green onions are different in that leeks are firmer and more durable in cooking. Green onions will wilt or sometimes become slimy if they are cooked. Leeks have an onion like flavor that pair well in pasta dishes and casseroles.
How to Clean and Cook Leeks
Normally you can buy leeks in a bundle (2-3 at a time). This is what you will need for this bow tie pasta recipe.
Cut off the bulb or root of the leek (the all white part) and then cut above the light green part. Right where the dark green branches start to separate. The dark part of the leek is more firm and takes longer to cook, so you will not need it in this recipe.
Using a sharp knife, cut thin slices of the light green part into strips. Place the strips in a bowl with cold water and shake the strips to remove any dirt or residue. Rinse and pat dry.
For this recipe, the leeks are sautéed and the process isn’t really any different than sautéing other onions.
Ingredients for Creamy Bow Tie Pasta
Bow tie pasta: Aka Farfalle. I love these little bow ties. The sauce gets in every nook and cranny of the noodle. I always cook mine for a minute or two longer than what the box says because the center ‘knot’ is sometimes too firm for my liking.
Mushrooms, leeks and garlic: If you can’t find leeks, you can use a shallot for this recipe or just omit it all together.
Half and Half and parmesan cheese: I tried using 2% milk for this bow tie pasta recipe to make it lighter, but it just makes it watery and takes away from the flavor. You really do need the half and half to give it that soft luxurious mouth feel.
Lemon: The fresh lemon juice really brightens up the dish and give it that springy feel.
Hope you all love this recipe as much as I do! Please leave a star rating/comment below, it helps me get noticed in this big internet world!
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This creamy bow tie pasta dish with mushrooms and leeks is the perfect spring dinner.
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tbsp EVOO
- 2–3 leeks, light green part only, cut into strips
- 2, 8 ounce packages of mushrooms (or 3–4 large portobello mushroom caps), diced
- 1 box of bow tie pasta (16 ounces)
- 3/4 cup half & half
- 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, grated is best
- 1 lemon, juiced
- Garnish: Fresh cracked black pepper
- Boil pasta water and cook according to package instructions (I always cook bow ties 1-2 minutes longer than what the box says because they are never fully cooked in the middle).
- While pasta is cooking, sauté garlic and leeks in a large saucepan over medium/high heat in the olive oil. Once the leeks start to cook down (usually 1-2 minutes) add in the diced mushrooms.
- Keep saucepan on medium/low heat and add in half and half, continue to stir.
- When the pasta finishes cooking, do not drain. Use a slotted spoon and scoop out pasta right into the large saucepan with vegetables. Do this until all of the pasta is in the saucepan. Pour pasta water down the drain.
- Add in 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese and continue to stir. It should start to thicken up a bit.
- Remove from heat and serve immediately, squeeze fresh lemon juice over the top prior to eating. Garnish with fresh black pepper.
Want to make this a full meal? Add shrimp or chicken!
To make it vegan: Use cashew cream instead of half and half. ( I would recommend 1/2 cup cashews, 1 cup water, blended) and sub nutritional yeast for parmesan cheese.
- Category: dinner, lunch, side dish
- Method: boil, saute
- Cuisine: American, French
Keywords: bow tie pasta recipe, bow tie pasta, how to cook leeks, creamy mushroom and leek pasta