If you're feeling harried and your Christmas spirit is flagging, this seemingly unplanned event, actually a flash mob performance orchestrated by Canadian music students, will refresh and uplift you. It truly is ambrosia for world-weary souls.
From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...I first made this dish in August when sweet corn was plentiful. I found the recipe in Bon Appetit magazine and the pesto was unusual enough to intrigue me. At that time, I made the dish with fresh corn and Bob and I really liked the distinctive and sweet flavor it gave to the pesto. The finished sauce is similar to a carbonara and almost as easy to make. I wanted to make something light for last night's supper and Bob suggested this. With no fresh corn on hand, I decided to make the pesto using frozen shoepeg corn. I've had great luck using shoepeg as a replacement for fresh corn. It is lighter in color and more tender that other types of frozen corn and it's as close to the fresh product as you can get in December. I can happily report it worked well in this recipe. While I used fresh fettuccini to make the dish, a top quality brand of dried pasta would also work well. I do hope you'll try this. I know it sounds a bit strange, but it really is lovely. Here's the recipe.
Fettuccini with Corn Pesto...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite adapted from Bon Appetit
4 bacon slices
1 (16-oz.) bag frozen shoepeg corn, thawed
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 -1/4 teaspoons kosher salt
3/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan, plus more for serving
1/3 cup walnuts, toasted
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
12 ounces fresh pasta (tagliatelle or fettuccine)
3/4 cup coarsely torn fresh basil, divided use
1) Cut each bacon slice in half length-wise, then crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces. Cook in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until crisp and brown, then transfer to a paper towel-lined plate to drain. Pour off all but 1 tablespoon fat.
2) Add corn, garlic, salt and pepper to skillet, and saute until the corn is just tender, but not brown, about 3-5 minutes. Transfer 1 1/2 cups of the corn to a small bowl and reserve. Transfer remainder to bowl of a food processor. Add walnuts and Parmesan. With machine running, slowly add oil through the feed tube and blend until pesto is almost smooth. Set aside.
3) Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling, salted water until just tender, but still firm and not quite as done as you would want it. Drain pasta, reserving 1-1/2 cups pasta water. Return pasta to pot and add corn pesto, reserved corn kernels, and 1/2 cup basil leaves. Toss well and add pasta water 1/4 cup at a time until desired consistency is reached. Cook an additional 2-3 minutes, or until pasta is cooked through. Season with additional salt and pepper if needed.
4) Divide among serving bowls and sprinkle with additional herbs, cheese, and reserved bacon.
Yield: 4 servings.
You might also enjoy the recipes for these unusual pestos:
Caper Pesto - Foodalogue
Cilantro-Parsley Pesto - Blue Kitchen
Pesto alla Trapanese - Sugar Pies
Walnut Pesto - Smitten Kitchen
Arugula Pesto - Simply Recipes
Charred Tomato Pesto - Stephen Cooks
This post is being linked to:
Smiling Sally - Blue Monday