Saturday, July 18, 2009

Arugula: First Installment

I used about half of this week's arugula in a pasta with peas. It was perfect for a summer night's supper, with a baguette to go with, and a vinaigrette-dressed salad beforehand. Watermelon and cantaloupe chunks completed the best of summer menu.

Here's how I made it:

Farfalle with Peas and Arugula

1 pound dried farfalle (bowties) pasta
1 pound arugula, washed and torn into bite size pieces
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 tablespoons olive oil
3 cloves minced garlic
1 cup frozen English peas
Juice of half a lemon
1/4 cup freshly shaved parmesan cheese

1. Put a pot of water on the stove and set to boil. Cook pasta according to package directions.

2. Meanwhile, melt the butter and olive oil and saute the minced garlic just until slightly softened. Add peas and season with salt and pepper. Judicious use of fresh herbs at this time may be helpful, perhaps thyme, definitely parsley. Add the arugula in small portions, cooking each until wilted.

3. When the pasta is ready, use a measuring cup to scoop out one cup of the pasta water. Use this to freshen the sauce, if necessary. Drain the pasta and pour into a lovely, large bowl, the show-offy artisanal one that you use for your prettiest pastas. Toss the garlicky greens and peas with the pasta, squeeze a bit of the lemon over all, and serve with fresh parmesan shavings (if you have the good stuff, by all means, use it on this.).

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