It’s also the day Jay comes back from a week away for work. We’re meeting in the mountains with our BFFs and are going to galavant all weekend.
I’m making lamb.
Before that, though, we need to indulge in our most recent vegan recipe, dontcha think?
This one was GOOD, guys. Incredibly easy because it’s raw (duh, it’s pesto), and FULL of flavor. I love the flavor of raw asparagus, and find it widely underused.
You gotta make this, is what I’m saying. You need 1/2 bunch or so of asparagus, pistachios, olive oil, pasta, green onion, garlic, and lemon. That’s it! And salt, but you probably didn’t need me to tell you that.
This is a REALLY fast meal – the longest part is boiling the pasta! So, get a big pot of water heating with 1 tablespoon or so of salt. If your pistachios aren’t toasted, toss them in a dry pan over medium heat for 3 minutes or so until they’re slightly darkened and fragrant.
Then, cut the asparagus into 2 inch pieces, and separate the tops from the bottoms. Don’t worry too much about discarding the woody ends – since we’re processing everything in the food processor it doesn’t matter if the asparagus is tough! Cut the onion into pieces too, and peel the garlic.
This TEXTURE. So good. You could pulse this even more to make it smoother, but I like the random bits of asparagus and pistachio running through the pasta.
Now, back to the pasta. When the water boils, set a timer for ONE MINUTE LESS than the al dente cooking time. Remember the asparagus tops? We’re about to help them fulfill their destiny. Or something.
- 2/3 pound pasta, your choice
- 1/2 bunch asparagus, cut into 2 inch lengths, tops and bottoms separated
- 1 scallion, cut into 2 inch lengths
- 1 whole lemon
- 1 clove garlic
- 1/4 cup toasted pistachios
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- Heat a large pot of water for the pasta. Boil the pasta to al dente. In the last minute of cooking, remove 1 cup of the cooking liquid for the pasta sauce and reserve. Add the asparagus tops to the pasta at the same time and cook for 1 minute. Drain the pasta and asparagus together.
- Meanwhile, make the pesto. Combine the asparagus bottoms, scallion, garlic, and pistachios in the bowl of a food processor. Zest the lemon into the mixture. Add the olive oil, and pulse until finely chopped and a paste forms.
- Cut the zested lemon into wedges for serving.
- When the pasta is cooked, add it pack to the pot with the asparagus tops and pesto. Splash in 1/2 cup of the reserved pasta water and stir everything together. Taste, and add more pasta water if you'd like a saucier pasta or more salt if needed.
- Serve with lemon wedges. Enjoy!