A Sarcastic Appetite

Pasta with Parmesan and Minted Peas
June 14, 2010, 10:08 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

I hate to admit it, but I’ve totally jumped on the Nutritional Ninja’s dietary bandwagon. When it comes to pasta, that is. Gluten-free pasta is pretty easy to find these days; it typically cooks more quickly than traditional semolina pasta, and call me crazy – but I usually can’t tell the difference. Gluten-free pasta also doesn’t feel quite as heavy in the belly as traditional or even whole wheat pastas…or at least that’s what I tell myself when I go back for seconds.

This took me somewhere between 30-45 minutes to make, start to finish, and I was taking my time. It’s a pretty simple approach: cook some peas and onions in olive oil with a bit of honey and then puree; add back into a saute pan with whole peas that have been cooked in butter. It is slightly on the sweet side; I had wolfed it down before wondering if a dash of red pepper flakes would have added balance, so keep that in mind. It’s also the newest iterations in a series of dinners whereby I add diced poached chicken breasts to an otherwise protein-less pasta to please said Ninja’s dietary requirements, and it seems to make everyone happy. I’m running with it.

Pasta with Parmesan & Minted Peas

Serves 4. Adapted from this recipe.

4 glugs of extra-virgin olive oil

1 medium Spanish onion, chopped

1 tbsp wildflower honey (if you have it; substitute regular if not)

3 c. frozen petite or baby peas

lots of salt and ground pepper

6 tbsp. butter

1 lb. gluten-free pasta

1 1/2 c. diced cooked chicken

1 c. freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

1/2 c. packed fresh mint leaves, chopped

Boil a pot of water and cook the pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large saute pan, heat the olive oil until it is shimmering. Add the onion, honey, and 2 cups of the peas. Season with salt and pepper. Saute until softened, about 10 minutes. Scoop everything into a food processor and pulse until pureed coarsely (don’t overdo it). Set aside. Once the pasta is cooked through, drain, but be sure to reserve about a cup of the cooking water.

In the same saute pan, melt the butter and add the last cup of peas and the chicken (if it’s cold) to heat it through. (If it’s still hot, toss it in at the end.) Cook slowly over low heat until softened, a few minutes. Add the pea puree, more salt and pepper to taste. Ladle some of the pasta water into the mixture and stir to combine. Add the pasta, another ladle of water, and toss again to combine. Add the cheese and mint; stir again and serve immediately.

2 Comments so far
Leave a comment

This looks yummy, I’m always wondering what to do
with mint. I’m looking forward to giving it a try.
Thanks for sharing.

Comment by Kathy

[…] amino acids, phosphorous, fiber, magnesium, iron – and is gluten free for those of us who care. Just remember to soak your quinoa for fifteen minutes in water to remove any trace of bitterness. […]

Pingback by Quinoa Salad with Asparagus, Spinach, Goat Cheese & Chicken « A Sarcastic Appetite

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