Pea-Pesto Handkerchiefs

Prep Time:
15 mins
Total Time:
30 mins

Made with vibrant green peas, fresh basil, and curly lasagna noodles, this simple spring dinner looks beautiful when plated.


  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • 10 ounces frozen peas

  • ¼ cup packed fresh basil leaves, plus more for serving

  • 1 small clove garlic, coarsely chopped

  • ¼ cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, plus more for serving

  • cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for serving

  • 12 ounces curly lasagna noodles, broken into 2-inch pieces

  • 1 cup ricotta, for serving


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Toast pine nuts on a rimmed baking sheet 5 to 7 minutes; set aside. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil; add peas and cook until bright green and tender, about 1 minute. Transfer to a plate with a slotted spoon. Let cool slightly.

  2. When cool enough to handle, add half of peas to a food processor with basil, pine nuts, garlic, Parmigiano-Reggiano, and 1 tablespoon water. Pulse until a paste forms. With machine running, slowly drizzle in oil. Season with salt and pepper.

  3. Return water in pot to a boil; add pasta, a handful at a time. Cook according to package instructions, stirring frequently, until al dente. Reserve 1 cup pasta water; drain. Return pasta to pot; toss with pesto and reserved pasta water. Divide among 4 plates; top with remaining peas and more basil leaves and Parmigiano-Reggiano. Dollop with ricotta, drizzle with oil, and serve.

    pea pesto handkerchiefs pasta in bowl with spoon
    Chris Simpson
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