Just-cooked pasta is tossed with melting cream cheese to form an incredibly smooth luxurious sauce. The smoked salmon adds extravagance balanced by other familiar flavours: dill, lemon, onion, mustard and capers.

“This is one of the most popular dishes on my table. Our friends love its bright, familiar flavours and we love how easy it is to make.” – Chef Michael Smith, host of Food Network’s Chef at Home and Chef Abroad.

Makes 4 servings

Ingredients

1 lb penne or your favourite shaped pasta like bowties (long pastas like spaghetti don’t work as well)
1 cup room-temperature cream cheese
1 bunch of fresh dill, chopped
4 green onions, sliced
1 lemon, juiced and zested
1 heaping spoonful of Dijon mustard
1/4 cup capers
8 ounces smoked salmon, or more
sprinkled sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Directions

Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil. Season it liberally with salt until tastes like a day at the beach on Prince Edward Island. As the pasta cooks it will absorb the salted water and become properly seasoned. Add pasta and cook al dente, until the pasta is cooked through but still pleasantly chewy.

Scoop out some of the starchy cooking water. Drain the pasta but not quite all the way. Leave it a bit wet. Toss the pasta back into the pot along with a splash or two of the reserved water, perhaps a half-cup or so in total then immediately add the rest of the ingredients. While the pasta is still steaming hot it will easily melt the cream cheese and form a rich, creamy sauce. Season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.

Recipe By Chef Michael Smith, from Reader’s Digest Best Health Web Site

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