Orecchiette with Pea, Roasted Almond and Broccoli Pesto

, from Issue #58. September, 2015
Photography by Manja Wachsmuth.
Orecchiette with Pea, Roasted Almond and Broccoli Pesto

Vibrantly coloured and flavoured, pesto is ideal for saucing pasta as well as served as a dip, or with chicken, fish and lamb.

Serves: 4


500 grams dried orecchiette pasta
200 grams bocconcini 
2 tablespoons roughly chopped roasted almonds

1 cup frozen peas, thawed
1 cup small florets of raw broccoli
small handful basil leaves
cup roasted almonds
1 clove garlic, crushed

2 tablespoons lemon juice
cup freshly grated Parmesan
¼ cup olive oil

sea salt and freshly ground pepper


Pesto: Place all the ingredients in a food processor and process until well chopped but not totally smooth. Season well and thin with a little water if too thick. Set aside.

Pasta: Cook the pasta in a large saucepan of salted, boiling water until al dente.

Drain and reserve ¼ cup of the cooking water. Tip the pasta back into the saucepan and add the pesto and the cooking water. Stir gently over a medium heat until hot. 

To serve: Divide the pasta between bowls and top each one with a couple of ripped bocconcini. Drizzle with a little olive oil, a grind of pepper and the chopped almonds.

Pantry Note: Orecchiette pasta is a type of pasta from Puglia, shaped like a small ear (in Italian “ear” is “orecchio”). Each one is about 2cm in size and looks like a small white dome with a thinner centre than edge and a rough surface.