Pea and Asparagus Pesto

Sorry for the absence. I’ve been so busy and not really cooking anything memorable lately, so I figured I’d share one last spring pesto. This one is one of my favorites.

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This past weekend we were in Boston, eating more food than the human body should normally be able to handle and visiting my lovely soon-to-be brother-in-law and his lovely girlfriend. You can read more about that over at Hungry City Blogs tomorrow, but I will tell you that I love Boston not only because I get to see two people I adore, but also because it seems like every single corner in that city is covered by trendy restaurants and bars – good food and beer everywhere you look. My kind of city.

Picnik collage

So this pesto. I promise it’s the last one! Especially since my quasi-CSA informed me today that this is the last week of local asparagus. This pesto is so great though. The flavor is sort of mild and understated, yet subtly sweet. Perfect with some whole wheat pasta and more asparagus.

Pea and Asparagus Pesto

1 cup frozen or fresh peas
1/2 bunch fresh asparagus, woody ends removed
1/4 cup fresh Parmesan cheese, grated
1/4 cup good quality extra virgin olive oil
juice of 1/2 of a lemon
salt and pepper

whole wheat pasta – I love thin spaghetti
handful or more of spinach
other 1/2 bunch of fresh asparagus, woody ends removed

Cook the asparagus and peas in boiling water for just a few minutes – enough for the peas to un-freeze and the asparagus to get just tender but not mushy. Toss those in a food processor with the rest of the pesto ingredients and blend to combine.

Picnik collage

Cook the pasta according to package directions, tossing the rest of the asparagus in about half way through. When you turn off the heat, submerge the spinach then quickly drain, preserving a bit of the pasta water. In a saute pan on medium high heat, heat the pesto then combine with the asparagus, pasta, spinach, and a splash of pasta water (add more water until you get a consistency you want). When pesto sticks to pasta nicely, serve.

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