Feast or flop: Tomato and feta pasta

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Emma Lucas

Tomato and feta pasta: the recipe that took the internet by storm. Made popular in Finland, this dish gained traction due to its simple instructions yet complex taste.

Emma Lucas, Staff Writer

For me, it seems as if every phase of quarantine has been defined by its own staple pasta recipe. First, it was Gigi Hadid’s infamous spicy tomato and cream pasta (which has grown to be a favourite in my own household). A few weeks ago, this new feta and tomato pasta recipe popped up all over my social media feed. Sure enough, it quickly became a trending topic in the food world. 

At first, I thought it was a joke. How could one possibly make pasta sauce out of just two ingredients? There was only one way to resolve this: try it out myself. 

Here is an overview of the ingredients and instructions that I followed, as well as a link to the original recipe.

  • Two trays of cherry tomatoes
  • Pinch of salt
  • Pinch of pepper
  • Pinch of oregano*
  • 120 mL (½ cup) olive oil
  • One block of feta cheese
  • (Optional) 120 mL (½ cup) pasta water
  • Two cloves of garlic**

* Not included in the original recipe

**Would recommend using less

  1. Preheat oven to 205°C
  2. In an oven-safe dish, season tomatoes with salt, pepper and oregano, adding in olive oil.
  3. Add feta block to the center of the dish and flip to coat.
  4. Cook for 35 minutes, checking occasionally.
  5. Boil pasta according to package instructions. Save some pasta water if you would like to alter the consistency of the sauce.
  6. Once out of the oven, crush tomatoes and feta with a fork. 
  7. Add garlic, pasta water, and seasoning as desired.
  8. Pour in cooked pasta.

To arrive at the final verdict, I will be assessing the recipe from three different standpoints: accessibility, difficulty and taste.

This recipe only requires one to buy two ingredients, both of which can be found at nearly any supermarket. Many of the seasonings and garnishes can be experimented with or even omitted – it’s all about altering it to what’s accessible in your own pantry.

With regard to difficulty, making this pasta was likely one of the easiest recipes I have ever followed. I would recommend this dish for even the most novice of home cooks. That is, unless you want to up the ante by making homemade pasta. Whole different story.

Last but not least, taste. As skeptical as I was, I was pleasantly surprised that the final product even remotely resembled a sauce – and a good one at that. The texture was creamy yet slightly grainy. The seasoning didn’t distract from the taste, but rather elevated the dish and made the flavor profiles compliment each other.

The one thing I’d recommend is to use less garlic unless you have a strong taste for it. To me, it was slightly overpowering. However, ask my mom – an avid garlic lover – and she’ll say I’m way off base. Again, tailor the pasta to your pantry and your palette.

Overall, this quick and easy pasta dish is one that is definitely worth the try.

The final verdict: feast.