This pea and mint pesto pasta is from our growing adventures. It's delicately minty, with pine nuts and almonds bringing texture, parmesan bringing salt cheesiness, and fresh garlic and lemon giving a satisfying kick.
As the summer comes to a close, it's time for my final Grow Your Own update.
In my first post, I shared our adventures in sowing seeds, potting up and early seedling care. In my second post, I gave an update on the progress of our tomatoes and basil, and how much we were enjoying eating a meal made from produce we'd grown ourselves.
Today, I'm excited to share how our strawberries, peas and mint progressed, and I also have a recipe that we made with our produce (topped up with some supplies from the local grocer - well this is our first year of growing!)
So first up, I'm pleased to say that our strawberries got off to a great start, and we managed to keep the birds away from the fruit long enough to enjoy our first harvest.
We only had a few fruit this year, but they were absolutely delicious; a world away from the chilled, imported strawberries we're all used to finding in the supermarkets. The plants should produce a bigger crop next year, and they will also create new plants which we can pot up to increase our strawberry patch. I can't wait!
Our pea plants were very popular with the local snail and slug population. We used copper tape around the pots to deter them, but the plants took a while to recover and we had a rather small yield from them, but we've learned a lot for next time. Still, the low yield was a great excuse to eat our crop straight from the pod - sweet and delicious! Growing peas was great fun and we'll definitely give it another go next year.
Our mint plant has really thrived, with very little intervention from us. I'm loving fresh mint tea, it's perfect in Pimms and, of course, it makes a wonderfully refreshing pesto.
Here's how to make it.
- 350g (12.5 oz) rigatoni
- 45g (1.5 oz) pine nuts
- 45g (1.5 oz) blanched almonds
- 2 large garlic cloves
- 50g (2 oz) parmesan (or hard cheese equivalent)
- 1 handful of mint leaves
- 150ml (5 fl oz) olive oil
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- Salt and pepper
Put the pasta on to cook in plenty of boiling, salted water. It'll take about 10 minutes to cook, which gives you time to prepare the pesto.
Put the pine nuts, almonds, garlic cloves, parmesan, three quarters of the mint leaves and olive oil into the bowl of your food processor.
Blitz until coarse.
Add the lemon juice and a splash (up to 50ml/1.76floz) of hot water borrowed from the pasta pan) and blitz again.
Taste and add more mint leaves as required.
Blitz again and finally season to taste.
Drain the rigatoni and serve into a large bowl. Top with the pesto.
And the peas.
Mix and enjoy!
It's super yummy, I promise! Are you tempted to try this recipe?
Growing our own food has been such a rewarding experience. It's provided fun family time, taught us some new skills, and given us super-fresh, wonderfully tasty produce. And seeing all that lovely food growing just outside the back door has also been a real source of recipe inspiration to me. I think I've caught the grow-you-own bug!
Print this recipe
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Pea and mint pesto rigatoni
- 350 g (12.3 oz) dried rigatoni
- 45 g (1.6 oz) pine nuts
- 45 g (1.6 oz) blanched almonds
- 2 large garlic cloves
- 50 g (1.8 oz) Parmesan or vegetarian hard cheese
- 1 handful mint leaves
- 150 ml (5.1 floz) olive oil
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 pinch salt and pepper
- Put the pasta on to cook in plenty of boiling, salted water. It'll take about 10 minutes to cook, which gives you time to prepare the pesto.
- Put the pine nuts, almonds, garlic cloves, parmesan, three quarters of the mint leaves and olive oil into the bowl of your food processor.
- Blitz until coarse.
- Add the lemon juice and a splash (up to 50ml/1.69floz) of hot water borrowed from the pasta pan) and blitz again.
- Taste and add more mint leaves as required.
- Blitz again and finally season to taste.
- Drain the rigatoni and serve into a large bowl. Top with the pesto.
- And the peas.
- Mix and enjoy!
- It's super yummy, I promise!
Pin this pea and mint pesto rigatoni
More great pesto dishes to try
For more ideas and inspiration for your next pasta dish, visit my pasta meals recipe index! Here are some great recipes using pesto!
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