Posted: 10 August '10 by Niall
Here’s a great little recipe for a light meal on these (slightly) warmer Summer days – it’s perfect for a mid-week meal too, taking only as long as it takes the pasta to cool after you’ve cooked it, providing you’ve made the pesto in advance.
The recipe is a tweaked version of Ina Garten’s (of “The Barefoot Contessa”) – a simple little dish with competing creamy, sweet, sharp, and nutty flavours that will keep your tastebuds interested.
I’ve also used a good dash of Hemp oil from Harnett Oils in the pesto – it really does give a nutty, grassy kick to the pesto and adds a new dimension to the dish.
As I said, you can/should make the pesto in advance. We made ours on Saturday afternoon and the extra time in the jar really allowed the flavours to mellow and combine to produce a far better pesto. More than this, I always find that it’s handy to have a jar of pesto to hand – it can instantly improve even the most bland of dishes or sandwiches!
Serves 2 as a light meal
For the pesto
- 1 garlic clove, peeled
- 2 cups fresh basil leaves
- 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 cup of Harnett’s Oil Hemp oil
- 1/2 cup of good Olive oil
- 1/2 cup of grated Parmesan
- 1/2 a lemon, juiced
- Grated zest from a lemon
You’ll also need a food processor, and a jam jar to keep the pesto in.
For the pasta
- About 200g of penne pasta
- 1 tbsp of olive oil
- 2 tbsp of pesto
- 1 tbsp of lemon juice
- 1 tbsp of mayonnaise
- 1/4 cup of grated parmesan
- 3/4 cup of frozen peas, defrosted
- 1/4 cup of toasted pine nuts
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Place the garlic, basil leaves, pine nuts, salt, and pepper into your food processor and pulse until the ingredients are finely chopped.
- With the processor still running, slowly add the Olive oil followed by the Hemp oil.
- Check the consistency – you’re looking for a thick, smooth texture. If the pesto is too thick you can add more Olive oil.
- Add the Parmesan, stirring thoroughly.
- Taste the pesto to check the seasoning and spoon the mixture into your jam jar.
- Cook the pasta until in slightly salted water and drain thoroughly.
- Toss the pasta with a tablespoon of olive oil to stop the pasta sticking together and set aside to cool to room temperature.
- When the pasta has cooled add your pesto, peas, Parmesan, lemon juice and mayonnaise, mixing the ingredients together so that the pasta has been coated.
- Spoon the servings into a bowl and sprinkle some toasted pine nuts and cracked black pepper over the top to serve.
A “cup” is an American measurement. If you don’t have the utensils to measure your ingredients like this, then you can do a quick conversion:
- 1/4 cup = 4 tablespoons
- 1/3 cup = 5 tablespoons
- 1/2 cup = 8 tablespoons
- 3/4 cup = 12 tablespoons
- 1 cup = 16 tablespoons