September 14, 2007
Lemon and Pine Nut Pasta

Since we discovered whole wheat pasta, we're always looking for new ways to dress the stuff. I mean, tomatoes are a New World fruit, so the Italians didn't even have tomatoes until nearly 1500, so what were they eating with their noodles beforehand?

On this particular evening, I was recovering from the granddaddy of all colds so the idea of hot citrus to clear my sinuses appealed to me. We also tried a new type of pasta that is made not only from whole wheat flour but from flour from jerusalem artichokes, which you may know as sunchokes.

We'd picked up the pasta after a sailing trip from Annapolis. Our captain ran us in to harbor just ahead of the kind of storm that old men with white beards, pipes, and a wooden leg recount with "The sea was angry that day, my friends..."

We were off the water by the time the storm hit, but driving 40 miles in that rain was no pleasant thought, so we had pulled into a mall that housed a Whole Foods. While wasting time in the Whole Foods, we came across this particular pasta and decided it was worth a try. After we'd worn out our welcome we stood outside under an awning and watched sheets of water pelt the tarmac. "The parking lot was angry that day, my friend..."

Eventually, the angry parking lot got less angry, and we took our pasta home to sit in our cupboard until last night when I made this delicious lemony pasta with it. I used the same technique I'd used a few weeks ago with the goat cheese pasta, combining pasta water with cheese (in this case Parmesan) to make the bulk of the sauce. You'll like the lightness of the sauce and I'm sure it'll taste wonderful, even if you have to settle for plain old whole wheat or white flour pasta instead of our fancy half-jerusalem-artichoke noodles.

Lemon and pine nut pasta

zest and juice of two lemons
12 oz dried whole wheat or freaky jerusalem artichoke pasta
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup pine nuts
1/4 cup olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced

In a dry skillet, toast pine nuts until they become fragrant and golden. Remove and set aside to cool.

Start a big pot of salted water boiling. When it boils, add the pasta and cook until tender. Reserve two cups of pasta water, drain pasta.

In the bottom of the same pot you used for boiling, over medium heat, add the oil and garlic. Sautee for about 3 minutes. Add the pasta, lemon juice, lemon zest, Parmesan, and pine nuts and reduce the heat. Add about a cup of pasta water to thin the cheese out and create a sauce.

Serve in a a bowl with lemon parsley garnish.

Posted by Barrett in Maryland at September 14, 2007 7:17 AM Print-friendly version

this looks like a nice simple recipe... i will try it soon.

i wonder though what you think of the whole wheat pasta. does it taste better than normal pasta? i have always avoided strange pastas, but i was sorely tempted last week by some chili pepper pasta at target of all places. they're really going nuts with that archer foods line.

Posted by paul on September 14, 2007 at 9:26 AM

I wouldn't say that whole wheat pasta tastes any better or worse that the usual stuff. It's more toothsome, so it's somewhat like changing from good white bread to 12-grain. You might find it rough at first, but it's hard going back after you've gotten used to the whole wheat pasta.

My primary interest in the whole wheat pasta was that it has a lower Glycemic Index, which keeps me fuller longer.

I haven't tried many of the Archer products. Mostly when we go to Target we head for the toiletries. The Target near us has a very limited refrigerated selection, so I usually wait and go to the local Safeway for food to get everything at once.

I might give the chili pepper pasta a try. It sounds like it has potential.

Posted by barrett on September 14, 2007 at 10:15 AM

This was delicious! We picked some lemons off the tree outside!

Posted by Stacy on April 2, 2008 at 12:08 AM

This was pretty badass. The second time I made it i used red pepper flakes for spiciness and LOTS of extra garlic beacuse im a flavor freak, but the recipe as-is is worth it!

Posted by Bojangler on June 23, 2009 at 9:34 PM

Just tried this recipie as i only had lemon, pine nuts and pasta in the cupboard. It came up really tasty.

I did add some challots too...


Posted by Tim on February 15, 2010 at 6:11 AM
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