Wednesday, May 14, 2008
Pasta, Pesto, and Peas
Yesterday my parents dropped by on their way home to the Bay Area from Utah. I had lunch ready for them...and oh yeah... the grand babies too. ;-)
I love Ina Garten. Her recipes are easy and always delicious. These are from her Barefoot Contessa Parties cook book.
That morning before we left for violin I rolled out my mom's crescent butter rolls and left them to rise in time for lunch. Then when we arrived home from violin I started working on the fresh pesto and then a fresh fruit salad [strawberries, boysenberries, pineapple and blueberries - layered) and the Pasta, Pesto and Peas salad.
Pasta, Pesto and Peas (serves 12)
3/4 pound fusilli pasta
3/4 pound bow-tie pasta
1/4 cup good olive oil
1 1/2 cups homemade pesto
1 10oz package frozen chopped spinach, defrosted and squeezed dry
3 Tbl freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 1/4 cup good mayonnaise
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 1/2 cups frozen peas, defrosted
1/3 cup pignolis (pine nuts), toasted (optional)
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Cook the fusilli and bow ties separately in a large pot of boiling salted water for 10-12 minutes, until each pasta is al dente. [I cooked them together] Drain and toss into a bowl with olive oil. Cool to room temperature.
In the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade, puree the pesto, spinach, and lemon jucie. Add the mayonnaise and continue to puree.
Add the pesto mixture to the cooled pasta, then add the parmesan cheese, peas, pignolis, salt, and pepper. [I added chopped ham and I didn't add add'l salt - didn't need it] Mix well, season to taste, and serve at room temperature.
Pesto (makes 4 cups)
1/4 cup walnuts
1/4 cup pignolis (pine nuts)
3 Tbl diced garlic (9cloves)
5 cups fresh basil leaves, packed
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups good olive oil
1 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
Place the walnuts, pignolis, and garlic in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Process for 30 seconds. Add the basil leaves, salt, and pepper. With the processor running, slowly pour the olive oil into the bowl through the feed tube and process until the pesto is finely pureed. Add the parmesan and puree for a minute. Serve, or store the pesto in the refrigerator or freezer with a thin film of olive oil on top.