Saturday, May 19, 2012
Pasta with Corn Pesto
Which is what I did last week. I see corn on the cob in the supermarket and farmers market. But I can't imagine how it must taste. Also, when using frozen corn, I don't have to shuck and clean it and this becomes a quick and easy dinner.
This recipe hails from Bon Appetit in August 2010. I remember seeing it in there, but it wasn't until Josie blogged it that it really jumped out at me. I made it the next week, albeit with a few adjustments. And I've made it several times since, pretty much the same way every time. The only difference comes down to if I use fresh corn or not. I suppose if I wanted a vegetarian dish I could omit the bacon, but I cannot imagine omitting the bacon. Ever.
The major change I make from the original is that I omit the pinenuts. My husband does not like nuts in his food, so I just don't use them. Honestly, he probably would not notice if I did use them. But the first time I made it I didn't even have pinenuts in the house, and it came out just fine.
I can see us having this a lot this summer. Served hot and freshly made, or as a cold pasta salad the next day, the flavors cannot be beat.
Pasta with Corn Pesto
recipe adapted from Pink Parsley, originally from Bon Appetit, August 2012
4 slices bacon, cut into cubes
4 cups corn kernels (either frozen or cut from about 6 large ears of corn)
1 clove of garlic, minced
1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt
3/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus additional for serving
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
8 ounces pasta, cooked according to package directions
3/4 cup coarsely torn fresh basil leaves, divided
Cook the bacon in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until crisp and brown, stirring often. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a paper towel to drain. Pour off all but 1 tablespoon of drippings from the skillet. Add the corn, garlic, 1 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 3/4 teaspoon pepper to the skillet. Saute over medium high heat until corn is tender but not brown, abut 4 minutes. (If using frozen corn, I put it in the skillet frozen.) Transfer 1 1/2 cups of corn mixture to a bowl and reserve. Scrape remaining corn mixture into a food processor. Add 1/2 cup Parmesan and with the machine running, add olive oil through the feed tube and blend until almost smooth. Set aside.
Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until tender but firm, stirring occasionally. Drain, reserving 1 1/2 cups of cooking liquid. Return pasta to the pot. Add the corn pesto, reserved corn kernels and 1/2 cup of basil leaves. Toss to combine adding reserved pasta water if needed to thin to desired consistency. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Transfer to a large bowl and spinkle with remaining basil leaves, reserved bacon and additional Parmesan cheese.