Sunday, August 21, 2011

Bamboo Pasta with Sweet Almond Pesto


One of the items I could not bear to leave behind in my pantry in Germany was this organic bamboo pasta. It was just sitting there. After being overlooked and ignored for several weeks, it was practically screaming "Pack me!" So last minute, I threw it in one of my suitcases.


The pasta is made with bamboo powder and had been a surprise discovery in the organic section of a local store. I was intrigued and bought two bags immediately. 


One of the reasons it was one of the last items standing in my pantry was because I kept changing my mind on what to make with it.

A few days ago here in sweltering NYC, we had guests over for dinner (no, they weren't panda bears.) I wanted to prepare some room temperature light dishes. This bamboo pasta started talking to me again. Instead of "Pack me", it said "Pick me." So I decided to take my new food processor for a test drive and make a pesto sauce. Almonds came to mind as a nice complement to the pasta. I was right.


The bamboo pasta itself has a delicate flavor. A touch of agave syrup in the almond pesto added some sweetness and balanced the flavors perfectly.


I searched online to source bamboo pasta. Not easy. I found a German company that sells both the pasta and the powder if you want you make your own. Click here for the English version of the site.


This pesto would go well with many other flavored or plain pastas as well.


Bamboo Pasta with Sweet Almond Pesto


Ingredients:
  • 1 package of bamboo pasta
  • 3/4 cup ground almonds and some for sprinkling
  • 2 small garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cups fresh basil
  • 3/4 cup fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • zest from half a lemon
  • 1/2 teaspoon agave syrup
  • 1/3 cup olive oil (plus a few tablespoons extra to coat the pasta)
  • 1/3 cup parmesan cheese and some for sprinkling
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
Directions:
  • Boil a pot of water. Salt generously and add the pasta.
  • Mince the garlic and throw it into the food processor with the almonds, basil, parsley, lemon juice and zest. Pulse until combined.
  • Add half the oil and pulse until it is absorbed into the mixture.
  • Add agave, parmesan cheese, the remaining oil and salt. Process until smooth. Pulse in some extra oil if the mixture is too solid.
  • Drain the pasta and toss with some olive oil.
  • Mix the pesto into the hot pasta.
  • If you like, sprinkle extra parmesan and ground almonds on top.
  • Serve hot or at room temperature.

5 comments:

  1. Intriguing! I'll have to look for it. But I love the pesto! I recently perused my latest Saveur issue and there is a section on pestos of all sorts and I am planning on trying some of them. Yours is very tempting!

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  2. Wow I've never even heard of bamboo pasta. I didn't even know it was possible! "no, they weren't panda bears" ;-) I would have expected photos if they were!

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  3. Another new food item! Your pesto looks superb with this intriguing new (to me) pasta.

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  4. That's so odd - I would not have thought that bamboo pasta would only be made by a German company. Interesting! I am very intrigued to try it. And I bet pandas would love it too!

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  5. Your pesto looks great! I'll have to try your recipe. I made pesto with almonds once and it just wasn't.
    As for the bamboo pasta, I've never seen it anywhere let alone heard of it until today. Food blog enlighten me daily.

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