August 9, 2022

PARSLEY PESTO PASTA WITH PEAS

SPRING IS HEEERRRRRRREE! (Remember Oprah’s exaggerated yelling voice? Every cell of my body starts to wake up when the sun shines and the days grow longer. I crave super fresh flavours. This Parsley Pesto Pasta with Peas makes a great transitional recipe that will take you from the cold winter days to the warm days of spring. It’s bright and fresh-tasting, but it doesn’t need a lot of seasonal ingredients. This is a good thing because my brain can predict spring before fresh produce arrives at the markets. 😛

PARSLEY PESTO, A BUDGET-FRIENDLY ALTERNATIVE

Pesto with parsley is a great way to make pesto. It’s also a fraction of what fresh basil costs. It has a very fresh, almost grassy taste that I love. You can also use parsley with other herbs to increase the amount of pesto and lower the cost. To reduce the cost further, I made my parsley pesto without nuts. However, you can add walnuts, pine nuts or sunflower seeds to make it nuttier.

PASTA ADD-INS

Budget Bytes style, this pasta recipe was very simple. However, I have many ideas for adding other ingredients if you wish to spice it up. Sun-dried tomatoes or fresh grape tomatoes are also available in spring. You could chop some spinach and add it to your pesto for even more volume.

What type of PARMESAN is best for pesto?

Parmesan grated from blocks is a better choice than Parmesan in a container, although that is not always possible. I USED IT because I wanted to make my parsley pesto using the grated Parmesan. It is still delicious!

Is YOUR OLIVE OIL FRESH

Rancid olive oil can ruin your dish. Olive oil should not taste or smell bitter. To ensure that your olive oil is not bitter or sharp, give it a taste before you start. If your olive oil is not smooth tasting, it may have gone rancid. This means that the fat molecules in your oil have oxidized. 

PARSLEY PESTO PASTA WITH PEELS: HOW TO SERVE

Peas are a great source of protein. This dish can be served as a main dish or with any of the above add-ins. This pasta is a great side dish for burgers and other grilled meats, especially if you are having a cook-out. Super fresh!

PARSLEY PESTO PASTA w/ PEAS

Parsley Pesto Pasta With Peas is a great choice for spring and summer. It has bright, fresh flavours that are perfect for summer. This can be served as a main course or as a side dish with grilled food.

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cooking Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes

Servings: Up to 6

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 bunch flat-leaf Italian parsley, approximately 2-3 cups, loosely packed ($0.89)
  • 1 fresh lemon ($0.43)
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan ($0.88)
  • 2 cloves of garlic ($0.16)
  • Salt and pepper ($0.05
  • 1/4 cup olive oil ($0.52)
  • 1 lb. pasta* ($1.99)
  • 1 cup frozen peas (0.38)

INSTRUCTIONS

  • To remove dirt and debris from the parsley, rinse it well. Then, dry it with a clean, lint-free towel. Please take off the ends of the stems of parsley and place them in a bowl with the leaves and stems.
  • Zest and juice your lemon. Half of the lemon zest and 2 Tbsp juice should be added to a food processor. Add the Parmesan, garlic cloves, peeled, and freshly cracked pepper (15 cranks with a pepper mill).
  • Blend the mixture until it is well combined. As the processor blends the mixture, add the olive oil slowly through the chute. Salt can be added to the mixture once it has been fully incorporated. I used 1/4 teaspoon salt.
  • Bring the water to a boil and add the pasta. Once the water has boiled, add the pasta to the pot and boil for a few minutes until it is al dente. Add the frozen peas at the end of the cooking time and stir to combine. Allow the peas to sit in the boiling water for approximately one minute. Drain the pasta and peas using a colander.
  • Let the pasta cool to the point that it is not steaming. Add the pesto to the pasta and drain it. Mix to combine and serve. Sprinkle a little of the remaining lemon zest on top of each dish.

NOTES

Casarecce pasta was used, but any pasta that is short and has texture will work. So that the pesto can be absorbed, you want to ensure that your pasta has texture.

NUTRITION

Serving Size: 1 Serving Calories 638.38 Kcal Carbohydrates 95.53 G Protein 22.33 G Fat 18.5 g Sodium 534.85 M Fiber 7.55 g