Pasta again for dinner tonight. This time its Genovese style with Pesto, Asparagus and Kipfler Potato. My daughter has a swim meet this weekend and she’s carbohydrate loading. Only joking. About the carb loading that is. If the truth be known I’m using up the leftover pesto in the refrigerator, my husband is at a drinks function tonight and I want to be in and out of the kitchen as fast as I can. And there is nothing simpler and faster than this.
I’ve used asparagus and snow peas in this dish simply because they are in season and more importantly on hand in my refrigerator. I like to blanch the asparagus but shred the snow peas to add texture and crunch. Substitute beans or garden peas for the asparagus or snow peas. Any combination of vibrant, green vegetables is fabulous in this dish.
Pasta Genovese with Asparagus, Snow Peas and Kipfler Potatoes
400 g dried pasta, penne, casarecce or similar
3 kipfler potatoes, steamed, peeled and sliced into chunks
1 large bunch of asparagus, trimmed, spears sliced into thirds
100 g snow peas, topped, tailed, strings removed and shredded
1 cup pesto, recipe follows
Sea salt and pepper to taste
Parmesan, grated or shaved to serve
COOK the pasta in a large pot of salted, boiling water according to the instructions on the back of the box.
ADD asparagus to the pasta for the final minute of cooking time, to lightly blanch.
STEAM and prepare kipfler potatoes while the pasta is cooking.
DRAIN pasta and asparagus, reserving 1/4 cup of the cooking water to loosen the pesto.
TOSS the pasta and asparagus with the steamed potatoes, shredded snow peas and pesto, adding just enough of the reserved cooking water to the pesto to allow it to coat the pasta evenly.
SEASON with sea salt and a good grinding of pepper.
SERVE with parmesan.
The pesto will keep in the refrigerator for up to a week if stored in a glass jar. Seal exposed surface of the pesto with a thin layer of olive oil to prevent oxidation.
25 fresh basil leaves
1 clove garlic, bruised
100 ml extra virgin olive oil
40 g pine nuts, toasted
25 g parmesan cheese, freshly grated
25 g pecorino cheese, freshly grated
Sea salt and pepper
PLACE basil leaves, garlic, pine nuts and olive oil into the bowl of a food processor with a pinch of salt.
PULSE until finely chopped, but not pureed.
ADD parmesan and pecorino cheeses. Pulse once or twice to combine.
SEASON to taste, adding a further drizzle of olive oil if required to loosen the pesto.