Ciliegine with tomatoes and garlic scape pesto

By • June 17, 2010 0 Comments

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Author Notes: This is a twist on one of my go to hot summer night dishes – The Silver Palate’s Summer Pasta with Tomatoes, Basil and Brie. Everything is raw but the pasta, so there is not a lot of time spent in front of the hot stove when the air is so muggy that you sweat standing still. Garlic scape pesto is not for the faint hearted. But the small, cherry sized fresh mozzarella balls provide a good contrast to the pungent sauce.cheese1227


Serves two dinner sized servings or four as an appetizer

  • About 6 garlic scapes, cut in inch-sized pieces (approximately one cup)
  • 3 Tablespoons of toasted pine nuts
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 4 plum tomatoes, seeded and small diced
  • 8-12 Ciliegine, at room temperature and sliced in half
  • ½ pound of pasta (I use strozzapretti or orecchiette)
  1. Set a pot of salted water to boil for the pasta.
  2. Puree scapes and pine nuts in a food processor with olive oil and lemon juice until the mixture is almost creamy. You can’t really over process this as it takes a bit of time for the fibers of the scapes to break down. You can, however, under process it and the scapes will be stringy.
  3. Put a half cup of the scape pesto, the diced tomatoes and the halved ciliegine in the bottom of a large bowl. Drain the pasta, reserving a cup of the water it was cooked in. Pour the piping hot pasta over pesto, tomatoes and cheese and add about a ¼ cup of pasta water to loosen up the sauce. Mix completely, adding more water if necessary. Serve immediately.

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