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Month of veg, Day 1: pasta with potato, peas and pesto

Duncan and I have decided to dedicate May to exploring new vegetarian recipes. This means no meat (or fish!) for 31 days. We were inspired by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s book, “River Cottage Veg Every Day“.

Day 1, we thought we’d start relatively easy. I had made pesto earlier this year from basil from our friend Sam’s garden. When I’m freezing pesto, I go easy on the olive oil, and add it instead when I add the defrosted pesto to the pasta. So the recipe is roughly as follows (very similar recipe appears in Hugh’s book):

Pesto:
2 or 3 good handfuls of basil
1-2 cloves of garlic
About 2 tbsp roasted pine nuts
Salt and pepper to taste
Parmesan cheese
Enough olive oil to blend all the above ingredients

Pasta:
300g pasta (we used a combination of twists and penne)
300g new potatoes, cut into thick matchsticks
1/2 to 1 cup peas
Lemon juice
Pesto
Green olives (optional), chopped
Parmesan cheese to serve

This recipe assumes the pesto has been made and is sitting in your freezer. Take it out to thaw (or make some up from scratch, remembering to be a bit more generous with the oil).

Bring a pan of salted water to boil. Add in pasta and potatoes and cook until the pasta is al dente. This should be enough time for the potatoes to cook. With about a minute left in the cooking time, add the peas.

Drain. Add in the pesto with enough olive oil to get it coating the pasta. Grind in a good amount of pepper and some lemon juice to taste.

Dish up and top with green olives and freshly grated parmesan.

Pasta with potato, peas and pesto

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