The recipes on this blog are a combination of things I've learned over the years and meals inherited through generations of adoration for good food. They are a cherished property, so please be good to them.

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Monday, May 26, 2008

Pesto Parpadelle with Sauteed Spinach and Grilled Chicken


This was an easy weeknight dinner last week when we had a craving for fresh pesto (must be all that fresh farmers market basil) , a need to cook this beautiful spinach sitting in my refrigerator (i get a little crazy with greens at the market...).


I grilled some thin sliced chicken breasts that I marinated in the juice and zest of 1 lemon, 2 tbsp fresh ground pepper and sea salt and 4 tbsp olive oil.

First, bring to a boil enough water for your parpadelle (I used store bought parpadelle). Add about 1 tbsp sea salt to your water. Prepare pasta according to directions, less 1 minute.

Basic Basil Pesto:
2 c loosely packed basil leaves
2 tbsp toasted pine nuts
2 tbsp freshly grated Parmesan
1/4 tsp minced garlic (about one clove)
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 c plus 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
In a food processor, combine the basil, pine nuts, Parmesan, garlic, and salt and puree. While the motor is running, drizzle in the oil until incorporated. Season with pepper to taste.

(Cooks note**Use immediately or store in the refrigerator with a piece of plastic wrap placed right on the surface of the pesto to prevent discoloration, for up to 3 days, or freeze for up to 1 month.)

For the spinach:
2 tbsp olive oil
1 clove garlic, chopped fine
1 lb fresh spinach leaves, washed and ready!
1 tsp sea salt

In a large saute pan, heat olive oil over medium high heat. Add garlic and saute about 2 minutes. Add spinach and salt and allow to cook, tossing the spinach lightly until it begins to wilt. Reduce heat to medium low and allow spinach to cook about 1 more minute, until mostly wilted.

When the pasta is ready (1 minute less the package directed time), transfer the parpadelle to the pan with the spinach, tossing to incorporate. Add basil pesto (to taste) and continue to toss. Add about 1/4 cup of the pasta cooking liqued and continue to toss, cooking over meduum low heat for about 2 minutes. Serve immediately, topped with grilled chicken and paremesan.

7 comments:

Cynthia said...

I really like this dish.

Proud Italian Cook said...

Parpadelle, one of my favorites! Great dish Meghan!

glamah16 said...

I love Parpadelle. You cooked it up realy nice.

Kevin said...

This sounds good. Pesto made from the fresh basil from the farmers market is so good!

Carol Ott said...

You can freeze your pesto in an ice-cube tray...one cube (thawed, of course...) is about enough for one good serving of pasta.

Larissa said...

Mmmm! I love making fresh pesto during the summer.

Sara said...

Made this last night, so good. Used lemon basil from my garden and lemon pepper papadelle from trader joes. If I had all the ingredients I would make it again tonight!