Saturday, September 28, 2013

Peas Please Pasta

It's time to bring the glorious blues and greens and yellows of spring to the kitchen. Meals are getting lighter, and salads and quick entrees are beginning to replace slow-cooking winter fare. Today's recipe is a response to spring, and it's lovely shades of green leave no doubt that winter has passed. This pasta is quick, easy and delicious and it makes a perfect meatless meal. Any macaroni can be used to make it, but I love the way the long strands of spaghetti looked when napped with this luscious sauce of cream and a flavored pea puree. While peas are not everyone's favorite vegetable, I hope you'll give this a try. I like it well enough to keep it in my permanent recipe rotation. If served when just sauced and piping hot, any aversion to peas will be forgotten and the pasta will be eaten with gusto. It is also a wonderful way to get vegetables into younger children, especially if you omit the whole pea and pine nut garnish. This dish is table ready in 30 minutes. It's best to make no more of this than can be eaten in a single meal because it can get goopy once it's refrigerated. Enough said. Here's the recipe.

Peas Please Pasta ...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite inspired by Michele Humes


12 ounces of spaghetti

1 tablespoon butter

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1/2 cup finely chopped sweet onion

1 teaspoon minced garlic

2-1/2 cups frozen peas, divided use

1 cup heavy cream

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Pinch of nutmeg

1/4 cup toasted pine nuts

Optional: Finely grated Parmesan cheese to pass at table


1) Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil. Cook spaghetti until tender but still firm to bite, using times suggested on package instructions.

2) Meanwhile, place oil and butter in a large skillet. When butter melts add onions and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes over medium heat. Add garlic and saute until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add 2 cups of frozen peas and cook until softened and bright green in color, about 2 minutes. Transfer contents of pan to a blender. Add cream, salt, pepper and nutmeg and puree until smooth.

3) Strain puree through a sieve back into skillet. Discard solids. Heat sauce to warm through.

4) Run reserved 1/2 cup peas under hot water to thaw. Drain pasta, reserving about 1 cup of water. Turn spaghetti into sauce and toss to coat each strand with puree. If too thick, add pasta water a tablespoon at a time until desired consistency is reached. Transfer to a serving platter and top with reserved peas and pine nuts. Pass cheese at table. Yield: 4 to 5 servings.

You might also enjoy these recipes:

Tagliatelle with Peas and Canadian Bacon - Guvi's

Chilled Spring Pea Soup with Garlic Cream and Bacon - One Perfect Bite

Peas and Thank You - Bitter Sweet

Baby Bow Ties with Peas and Ham - Noble Pig

Minted Pea Puree (topper for bruschetta) - Talk of Tomatoes

Peas with Onions and Mint - One Perfect Bite

Meatballs with Peas - Jaana's Kitchen

Salmon and Pea Risotto - Coconut and Lime

Peas with Lettuce - Never Enough Thyme

Risotto with Smoked Salmon, Spinach and Peas - One Perfect Bite

Lemon Mint Snap Peas with Lima Beans or Edamame - One Perfect Bite

Spaghetti in Creamy Peas Sauce with Crisped Prosciutto - Serious Eats

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