Piccolini Penne with Pistachio Pesto and Spring Asparagus

Piccolini Penne with Pistachio Pesto and Spring Asparagus

INGREDIENTS

1 pound piccolini penne
1 bunch basil leaves
1/2 cup shelled pistachios
1 clove garlic, minced
3/4 cup Parmesan cheese (split)
2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 pound skinny spring asparagus, thinly sliced

DIRECTIONS

Place shelled pistachios in a food processor and process until finely chopped. Add garlic, basil and 1/2 cup Parmesan and process again. Finally, add olive oil and pulse just until integrated. Set aside.

Cut asparagus into very thin slices.

Cook pasta to al dente in large pot. Strain out water and return pasta to cooking pot. Add sliced asparagus and stir well. Mix in all but 1/4 cup of the pesto and serve at once. Pass extra Parmesan at the table! Serve with toasted French bread, topped with extra pesto and tomato slices.

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