Monday, June 6, 2011

Fettuccine with Fresh Peas and Basil

Oh. My. God. Just looking at this picture makes me hungry. Last month’s Bon Appetit, the Italy issue, is the best I’ve seen in years. The first outing from new Editor-in-Chief Adam Rapoport was vibrant, stylish, and mouthwatering, everything you would want from a leading food magazine. The latest issues have been uneven, but I’m giving the new staff a little time before issuing my judgment.

But, I keep going back to that Italy issue, picking it clean of every vaguely vegan friendly recipe. We’ve already discussed that heavenly Bucatini al Pomodoro from the cover. That recipe came from an article on cooking pasta perfectly. Every step highlights a different recipe, but the essence of the article focuses on making delicate pan sauces, and tossing almost al dente noodles with pasta water and light, fragrant toppings. This recipe pays homage to spring’s best pleasure, worth all the effort, fresh peas. Supported by savory shallots and bright basil, this light and satisfying dish will have you licking the plate clean.

Fettuccine with Peas and Basil
adapted from Bon Appétit
1/4 cup olive oil
1 shallot, finely minced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 1/2 cups fresh peas
1/4 cup fresh basil, chiffonaded
1 pound fettuccine
2 tablespoons non dairy butter
salt and pepper to taste

Heat the olive oil in a sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the shallot and garlic and sauté until tender and fragrant, about 5 minutes. Add the peas and cook until just done, another 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat a large pot of salted water. Cook the fettuccine until it’s almost done, about 7 minutes. Add 1/2 cup of pasta water to the pan. Simmer until it thickens slightly, 5 minutes. Add the noodles and toss them until coated in sauce, allowing them to finish cooking. Finish with butter and taste for salt and pepper. Add the basil and toss gently. Serve immediately. 

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