Pesto and Peas Fusilli

  
Hi there,

Tonight I had to whip up a quick meal for my family since the traffic was so bad, we couldn’t be bothered to eat out. Given the lack of ingredients, I resorted to typing things I had on hand into google and ended up with a pasta recipe. First I was very skeptical since there’s mayo in this recipe. Mayo with my pesto? No, thank you! Well, at least that was my initial thought, but it’s an Ina Garten recipe, and her recipes are usually very reliable. I ended up making it and everyone really enjoyed it. Is it authentic? No. Is it tasty? Oh, yes it is. So if you are looking for a quick pasta recipe, try giving this one a go!

Fusilli with Pesto and Peas (source: Ina Garten)

Ingredients

  • 3/4 pound fusilli pasta
  • 3/4 pound bow tie pasta
  • 1/4 cup good olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups pesto (packaged or see recipe below)
  • 1 (10-ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, defrosted and squeezed dry
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 1/4 cups good mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen peas, defrosted
  • 1/3 cup pignoli (pine nuts)
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Pesto:

  • 1/4 cup walnuts
  • 1/4 cup pignoli (pine nuts)
  • 3 tablespoons chopped garlic (9 cloves)
  • 5 cups fresh basil leaves, packed
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups good olive oil
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan

Directions 

Cook the fusilli and bow ties separately in a large pot of boiling salted water for 10 to 12 minutes until each pasta is al dente. Drain and toss into a bowl with the olive oil. Cool to room temperature.

In the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade, puree the pesto, spinach, and lemon juice. Add the mayonnaise and puree. Add the pesto mixture to the cooled pasta and then add the Parmesan, peas, pignoli, salt, and pepper. Mix well, season to taste, and serve at room temperature.

Pesto:

Place the walnuts, pignoli, and garlic in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Process for 15 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 thoroughly pureed. Add the Parmesan and puree for a minute. Use right away or store the pesto in the refrigerator or freezer with a thin film of olive oil on top.

Bon appétit 

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