Meatless Monday: Pasta with Yogurt & Caramelized Onions

Chobani, the best-selling Greek yogurt brand in America, is located a couple of hours away from Al Dente HQ near Norwich, N.Y. I ate Chobani for a while at the urging of my doctor, who saw it as a lean source of protein (24% of your daily recommended intake is found in one 5.3 oz. serving). I was pretty loyal to Stonyfield Oikos until Chobani caught steam. They were local, so it was an easy choice. But, I made a switch after discovering Fage Greek yogurt, which is also made just outside of Albany. It’s a far superior product that makes Chobani look second rate. And, as a company, it seems to have less problems and controversy surrounding it.

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Fage — which I pronounced as it is spelled, not by its preferred pronunciation fa-yeh — actually tastes like authentic Greek yogurt and makes for quite an awesome dairy substitute. It swaps in easily for cream or sour cream, and when heated, takes on the texture and tangy flavor of chevre. It was awesome in this pasta dish from Food52 Genius Recipes and was the perfect foil to the caramelized onions.

WHAT WORKED: The yogurt, for all of the reasons I mentioned before.

WHAT DIDN’T: I used dry pappardelle in lieu of the author’s suggestion for fresh tagliatelle. Trader Joe’s carries an all-star version of this pasta.

EASE OF PREPARATION: Easy. Six ingredients, and the onions are simply babysat so they don’t burn.

BEST FOR: Meatless Monday or a mid-week dinner when time is of the essence.

SERVE WITH: Some crusty bread and a semi-dry white wine. 

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Pasta with Yogurt & Caramelized Onions
Adapted from the original by Diane Kochilas from Food52 Genius Recipes by Kristen Miglore, Ten Speed Press (2015)

  • 5 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 6 cups coarsely chopped onions
  • sea salt
  • 1 lb. long pasta (the original calls for fresh tagliatelle; I used pappardelle)
  • 16 oz. plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 cup Pecorino Romano cheese, grated

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Add olive oil to a large skillet over medium-high heat. When it shimmers, add the onions and reduce the heat of the burner to medium-low. Cook, salting as you go, for 30 to 45 minutes. The onions should be soft, translucent and golden brown on the edges.

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Bring a large pot of water to boil over high heat. Salt liberally and cook pasta 1 minute past al dente. Reserve 1/2 cup of pasta water and drain. In a medium bowl, whisk together the yogurt and 1/4 cup of pasta water. Add additional water if the sauce is too thick. Toss the pasta with the yogurt, add the onions, and toss again. Sprinkle with grated cheese.

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