Monday, April 14, 2014
pistachio pesto pasta with lamb
Springtime food might be my favorite. I love all the fresh, bright flavors and the gorgeous, vibrant colors. It just makes me happy!
This dish combines all of those things into one crazy good pasta dish. The pesto is lemony and minty and good enough to eat by the spoonful. Don't worry, you'll have some extra leftover to do just that.
Lamb turns this into a hearty spring dinner, but the pasta would also be a lovely vegetarian dish on its own. Either way, y'all are going to love this one!
Pistachio Pesto Pasta with Lamb (adapted from Running to the Kitchen)
1 lb. fettuccine
1 lb. ground lamb
2 cups baby spinach
1/4 cup mint leaves
1/3 cup alfalfa sprouts
2 garlic cloves
juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup shelled pistachios
1/2 cup grated pecorino
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Salt generously, then add the pasta and cook to al dente according to the package directions. Reserve 1 cup of pasta water before draining.
Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the lamb and cook until completely done, breaking up the meat as it cooks. Add salt and pepper to taste. Transfer the cooked lamb to a paper towel-lined plate to drain excess fat.
While the pasta and lamb are cooking, make the pesto: in a food processor or blender, blend spinach, mint, sprouts, garlic, lemon juice, pistachios, pecorino, salt, and olive oil until smooth. Taste and adjust seasoning as desired.
Combine the cooked pasta, lamb, and as much pesto as you like (I used about half). You may want to add a bit of the reserved pasta water to thin it out. Garnish each bowl with more sprouts, pistachios, and pecorino. So good, y'all!