Chef Joel’s Beefy Mediterranean Pasta Recipe Quick and Easy

Friends Drift Inn Farm Recipes

Chef Joel's Penne Pasta Recipe...Easy Dinner Recipe!

Friends Drift Inn Jan 2013 Episode 10 Recipe

Click for Behind the Scenes with Chef Joel Worth
Click for VIDEO Friends Drift Inn Episode 10

Chef Joel Worth is fun in the kitchen. A little garlic, a little parsley, a splatter of olive oil and a splash of wine are a lovely way to start tonight’s dinner. What have you got in the refrigerator? We used green and yellow summer squash plus some fresh spinach from the low tunnel raised bed garden. I picked some onions from the garden and basil from a secret source. Giggles

Fresh basil always works with tomatoes! Joyce of Friends Drift Inn TV with Chef Joel Worth

We used whole wheat penne pasta. Penne, do you know what it means? It refers to the shape of the pasta, sort of like a pen made from a quill. Hollow with a sharpened point, the pasta readily soaks up sauce and flavors while still holding its unique shape. I chose a whole wheat penne, which makes for a richer taste and texture. Providing more nutrients than pasta made with bleached flour, the whole wheat penne includes bran fiber and the wheat germ. That’s a good thing!


Penne pasta is best cooked al dente, which means “to the tooth.” Cook penne until it has give as you bite still a bit chewy, not soft and mushy. Remove from heat a minute or so before you think it is ready. As you rinse the pasta, it will continue to cook just a bit. By preparing to the al dente stage, the pasta tubes will still have the ability to take up flavors from the sauce.

Joel marinated the beef for about an hour before we began cooking. You could marinate overnight. Chef suggests that the trick to making less desirable cuts of meat more tender is to soak in soy sauce. We used Matt Jamie’s Bluegrass Soy Sauce by Bourbon Barrel Foods made right here in Kentucky.

Chef Sautéed up the vegetables in a tall sided wok style skillet; splashing in wine to help the vegetables carmelize. The dish comes together quickly, once the vegetables are washed and chopped.

The dish was finished with a generous pour of cream, fresh parsley, and then tossed with the pasta. To plate, Joel grated fresh Parmesan cheese over the entrée. We served the crew an antipasto platter, Mediterranean Penne Pasta and homemade lemon soda. It was a good day!

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About Joyce Pinson

Joyce Friend Pinson is a regional farm-to-table columnist for the Appalachian-News Express. She is a local television host. Her column show and blog, Friends Drift Inn, explores food, gardening, and real life farm-to-table stories from the perspective of a baby boomer in Appalachia. Joyce has a background in agriculture, media, and small business. Joyce is an heirloom gardening addict and home canner. She has a penchant for big hats, pointy toed shoes, and bourbon. Along with her husband Charlie, Joyce really does live in a barn where they ballroom dance. And laugh. And cook. And giggle.