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Lemon, Parsley, and Parmesan plus Pasta


This parsley sauce is a riff on basil-and-Parmesan pesto.

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 6

Photography: Hans Gissinger

Source: Martha Stewart Living, January 2012


  • 2 cups flat-leaf parsley leaves, packed
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon red-pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest, plus more for garnish
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound trofie or other short, twisted pasta, such as fusilli
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese


  1. Make the pesto: In a food processor, pulse parsley, garlic, red-pepper flakes, lemon zest, and 1 teaspoon salt until coarsely chopped. With machine running, add oil in a slow, steady stream, processing until blended.

  2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta until al dente. Drain, reserving 1/4 cup pasta water.

  3. Toss pasta with pesto and Parmesan, then with reserved pasta water. Grate more lemon zest over each serving, and season with pepper.

Reviews Add a comment

  • rachelwebb
    1 FEB, 2012
    So simple, so delicous. Will definately make it again. It reminded me of summer time, it has a very light and fresh taste.
  • netty26
    19 JAN, 2012
    Unfortunately, I don't have the taste buds for parsley so I used cilantro instead and it turned out delicious! My boyfriend loved it and said it was light and tasty! Definitely adding this recipe to the book! Thanks Martha! =]