Homemade pesto makes all the difference! Especially when sweet peas get in on the act!
What happens when you take the basil out of pesto?
You add sweet peas, of course!
A short time ago I shared a recipe for Bruschetta with Sweet Pea Pesto, Prosciutto and Asparagus. It was my ‘first day of spring’ post and I was hoping that the kelly green of the pesto would take my mind off the perpetual gray skies just outside my window.
Did it work? Oh yes.
But better yet, I get to enjoy this sweet pea pesto pasta on days that are now sunny and warm. I actually need sunglasses for more than just a style statement 😉 and that’s saying something for living in a town whose population invests more in mittens and mufflers than Ray-Bans and flip-flops. (Does the word muffler date me? It does, doesn’t it? Does anyone say muffler anymore? Of course not, they say scarf. People say scarf. I say scarf. I’ve actually never used the word muffler before. I don’t even know where that came from. I might as well have said stole or tippet. Oh my.)
As these days become increasingly warmer it becomes increasingly rarer that I make a big pot of sauce and meatballs. I tend toward sauces and pestos on the lighter side.
This is one such sauce. And whether you use a food processor or a mortar and pestle – the result is always delicious.
The ingredients for this Sweet Pea Pesto Penne Rigate include:
- sweet peas
- toasted pine nuts (though you could use walnuts)
- olive oil
- salt & pepper
I’m willing to bet that you have most if not all of what you need for this supremely springy springtime dish. (I apologize for the alliteration. Sometimes I just can’t help myself.)
Here’s to sweet pea pesto, flip flops and sunglasses for as long as we can have ’em!
One year ago: Soul Snacks
Two years ago: Spring Minestrone with Chicken Meatballs
Three years ago: Split Pea Soup
Four years ago: Taco Dip
- 12 oz. frozen sweet peas
- 2 plump garlic cloves, minced
- ½ cup toasted pine nuts
- ½ cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
- ½ cup olive oil
- Salt & cracked black pepper, to taste
- 1 lb. penne rigate
- Cook peas according to package directions.
- Place peas, minced garlic, toasted pine nuts, grated cheese, pinch of salt and pepper into the bowl of a food processor.
- Begin blending and while motor is running, slowly add olive oil until fully incorporated.
- Once done, set aside.
- Cook pasta in salted boiling water until al dente.
- Reserve ½ cup cooking liquid, then drain pasta.
- Return pasta to the pot and add pesto, stirring constantly until sauce is fully incorporated.
- Add cooking liquid if it seems dry.
- Serve with an extra bit of cracked black pepper.