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Spinach Pesto Pasta

Updated: Apr 17, 2020

Cooked by Saki A

Written by Gabby C

Yield: serves 4-6


4 cups baby spinach

1 cup basil

1/2 cup toasted walnuts

6 tablespoons olive oil, divided

1 lemon

Kosher salt, to taste

2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

1/4 teaspoon red pepper powder

1 pound dried spaghetti


1. In a food processor, combine spinach, basil, walnuts, 3 tablespoons olive oil, lemon juice and 1/4cup water, then puree until smooth. Season with salt and pepper, then set aside.

2. In a pot, heat remaining olive and garlic over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring constantly, until golden and fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add the pasta, 5 cups water and a large pinch of salt to the pot. Bring to a simmer and cook until the pasta is al dente and the water has reduced into a thick space, 13-15 minutes.

3. Remove from the heat and stir in pesto. Adjust seasoning with salt and red pepper powder.

So you think you know Pasta?

Let’s start off with this: Despite what some may say, the great explorer, Marco Polo, did NOT bring pasta to Italy in 1296. In fact, noodles were being eaten in Italy long before that (possibly around 800 AD). 

That being said, we may never know which culture or region invented the famed noodle dish. In fact, we shouldn’t really waste our time because the main staple ingredients — flour and eggs — are found in myriad ancient dishes across the globe. 

But although the origins remain a mystery, it’s undeniable that Italians certainly have a leg up on the competition when it comes to current “noodle” popularity. To put it into perspective, the average American eats pasta at least once a week for a total of 20 pounds of pasta per year. And of the types of noodles being consumed, Italian pasta is the overwhelming favorite. 

Before you get cooking, I want to highlight one last fact: Pasta wasn’t always this abundant. Zanini de Vita, one of Italy’s premier food historians, explains, “Pasta was a luxury for centuries for four-fifths of Italians until the prosperity that came after World War II”. Flour, you see, was for the rich, and “the Poor wouldn’t even see it in paintings.” 

With this sense of perspective, we can appreciate pasta even more! Buon appetito, my friends!

Recipe adapted from thefeedfeed: https://thefeedfeed.com/jakecohen/one-pot-creamy-spinach-pasta

Pasta (Kummer K). The Atlantic. Retrieved on 04/12/20 from: https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/1986/07/pasta/306226/

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