Serious Eats: Recipes
French in a Flash: Pasta with Sweet Pea Pistou and Chèvre
It's April, so no matter what happens, it's officially spring. Pistou is a sauce from the south of France made from fresh basil, garlic, olive oil, and sometimes cheese and tomato. It's so garlicky that whatever pasta it finds itself wrapped around falls limp on the plate in garlic shock overload—in a good way.
I put a little twist on pistou by adding sweet peas. The sauce is whizzed together in the food processor while the pasta cooks on the stove. It's pungent from the garlic (must have the garlic), sweet from the peas, and salty from the Pecorino Romano (not quite French, but a must). The thick pistou clogs the twists of the corkscrew pasta and gushes as you bite into it. And as a final oh-my-gosh, I add creamy fresh goat cheese, a big springtime ingredient, that melts its tanginess into ribbons that fleck the hot pasta.
You could eat this in a big bowl by itself or serve this with anything—next to baked chicken or grilled fish, or anything simple like that. You will certainly have a spring in your step after this one.
About the author: Kerry Saretsky is the creator of French Revolution Food, where she reinvents her family's classic French recipes in a fresh, chic, modern way. She also writes the French in a Flash series for Serious Eats.