Pesto Pasta with Peas
and strawberry fennel salad
- Pine nuts - 1/4 cup ((Sub walnuts if you're on a budget))
- Basil - 4 cups, loosely packed ((You can also mix up the herbs and use parsley or cilantro))
- Garlic - 1 clove, peeled
- Parmesan - 2 oz, grated
- Olive oil - 1/4 to 1/2 cup
- Shells - 1/2 lb
- Peas - 2 cups
- Lemon - 1, juice of
- Fennel bulb, small - 1, sliced
- Strawberries - 1/2 pint, sliced
- Balsamic vinegar - 1 1/2 Tbsp
- Dijon mustard - 1 tsp
- Maple syrup - 1 tsp
- Olive oil - 2 Tbsp
- Arugula - 6 oz ((Or sub your favorite salad green))
- Pine nuts (optional step) - Toast on a frying pan over medium-high heat until golden brown. It's also completely fine to skip this step.
- Make pesto - Pulse basil leaves, pine nuts (you can reserve a few for garnish if you want), garlic, and parmesan in a food processor. Drizzle in olive oil until you get a sauce-like consistency. Season to taste with salt & pepper.
- Fennel / Strawberries - Prep as directed.
- Bring a saucepan of water to boil. Salt generously and add pasta. Cook until al dente, tender but not soggy. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup (118 ml) of the salted pasta water (for 4 servings - adjust accordingly if making more or less).
- Return saucepan to medium heat. Add in peas and cook until warmed, ~2 minutes. Add in pasta with reserved pasta water. Toss with desired amount of pesto and a squeeze of lemon juice. Garnish with more parmesan cheese and pine nuts if desired.
- Whisk together balsamic, mustard, maple syrup, and olive oil. Season to taste with salt & pepper. Toss with fennel, strawberries, and arugula. Enjoy salad with pasta.
Added cannellini beans to the pasta and really loved the addition. I didn't have the ingredients for the salad this time so I chopped some baby spinach and stirred it in off the heat with the lemon juice.0 Helpful
Salad was the best part!!!0 Helpful
That was a GREAT salad. Didn't think I'd like the fennel, but it went very well with the arugula and strawberries. We did a half basil/half cilantro pesto to use up our leftover cilantro -- I thought it was good but my husband did not care for the cilantro. All basil next time! Omitted the peas as we're not a big fan.0 Helpful
I've always been scared to make pesto, and now that I made this dish I am not sure why - very simple!!! Great dish, had friends over for dinner and everyone loved it. I want to make a big batch of pesto and freeze it for later.0 Helpful
Loved the side salad, strawberry and fennel worked really nicely together. The pasta is simple but tasty, though I did use store bought pesto.0 Helpful
Loved this. The husband thought it was a little too lemon-y but I thought it was absolute perfection. The salad was delish too.0 Helpful