pesto pasta with a kick.


my in-laws and my mother are all coming this weekend for the hub’s musical at school, and our kansas city chorale concerts.  so i thought i would make some antipasti-style nosh for the weekend, so that i don’t have to cook anything, yet, the fridge will be full of treats.

here’s what i plan to make:

dried cherry/orange scones (best recipe EVER)

butternut squash lasagna (giada’s recipe.  genius)

marinated olives ~ we live just down the street from lidia’s restaurant, and i love their green and kalamata olives, which are marinated in herbs and citrus.  i think i taste rosemary and orange zest, so i’m going to try to duplicate them!

i’ll have some cheese and sausage or salami.  that’s easy.

and, i think i’ll make this hot pepper pesto pasta.  i saw rachael ray make it this morning, and it looks really great.

here are the ingredients:

  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 pound penne pasta
  • 2 handfuls grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 1 cup packed flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/2 cup packed fresh mint leaves
  • 2 jalapeño peppers, seeded
  • 2 cloves garlic, pasted
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons pistachios, toasted
  • Zest and juice of 1 lime
  • About 1/3 cup EVOO – Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 small or 1 medium zucchini, halved, seeded and sliced into half-moons

how to make it is pretty self-explanatory: make the pesto with all the ingredients listed, from the parm to the EVOO.  use the butter to sautee the zuccini.  when the pasta is al dente, just add it to the pan with the zucchini.  add a couple ladles of the pasta water and the yummy pesto.  

my sweet mother-in-law might not be able to handle TWO jalapeno peppers, so i might take it down to one.  i will also add basil to the mint and parsley.  and maybe some grape tomatoes?  i can’t have pesto without tomatoes.

i’ll let you know how it tastes, but i think this sounds like a winner!

i just made this pasta this morning and it is not only beautiful, but so fresh and yummy.  i ate two plates of it for breakfast this morning!

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