Monday, September 9, 2019

Peppery Pecan Pasta Florentine

When you think of pasta, you may not consider it a dish that’s very exciting. This recipe will change your mind about that. I had such a taste for pasta, but with the temperatures around 93° all this week — I am not happy — needed something lighter than typical heavy white or red sauce fare. When I started thinking about things that reminded me of summer, spinach and lemons came to mind. So, incorporating those two items, and a host of others, I created this.

This is a pasta dish that won’t soon be forgotten. It is bright, peppery, and complex. The lemon juice gives it a citrus-y freshness, the pecans add nutty, woodsy heat, spinach adds both flavor and nutrition, and the basil provides a wonderfully pesto-like addition, all of which combine to make this one amazing dish. Try it at your first opportunity.
Peppery Pecan Pasta Florentine

½ lb. angel hair pasta
¼ c. extra virgin olive oil, divided
2 cloves garlic, minced
¼ t.
dried chili flakes
Zest of 1/2 lemon
2 T. freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 bag baby spinach, chopped, rough cut, or left as is
1 t. kosher salt
¼ t. freshly ground black pepper

½ c. Melissa’s Green Hatch Pecans, rough chopped
¼ c. freshly grated Parmesan

Cook pasta according to package direction; drain, reserving one cup pasta water.

While the pasta is cooking, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium high heat in a 9-inch sauté pan. Add garlic and
pepper flakes and stir for 30 seconds until fragrant. Add spinach and lemon zest, and cook for two minutes until spinach is wilted. Add the pasta, remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil, lemon juice, basil, salt, and pepper. Toss until coated. While tossing, pour in reserved pasta water, a little at a time, until a creamy texture is achieved.

Add pecans and Parmesan, and toss one more time before dividing among plates. Garnish with a few additional pecans and gratings of cheese.

Makes two main dish portions or four starter or side dish portions.

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1 comment:

Linda said...

You still have some of those pecans! Or did you order more? ;)
My husband always wants creamy or tomato-y pasta, but my favorite way is just a bit of olive oil and parmesan, usually with fresh tomatoes tossed with it. Why have I never thought of adding spinach and lemon juice? This sounds fresh and really good.