- Prep time 50 minutes
- Cook time 15 minutes
- Serves 4
This herbaceous pasta salad is inspired by one of my favorite summer dishes, trofie al pesto. It’s an icon of Liguria—handmade pasta spirals tossed with Genovese basil pesto, cubes of potato, and green beans—that I first enjoyed in a seaside café in Manarola, a small town in Cinque Terre. This recipe is entirely different, but the freshness of the dressing, made zingy with a dollop of yogurt (something I first spotted on Pasta Grannies) and squeeze of lemon, still brings visions of Riviera sunshine to mind. Enjoy it same-day or refrigerate and pack it up for your next excursion. You can also make it vegan by swapping the yogurt for your favorite dairy-free alternative and the Parmesan for nutritional yeast. —Meryl Feinstein, Pasta Social Club
green beans, trimmed and cut into halves or thirds
(about 2 medium) Yukon Gold (or similar) potatoes, peeled and cut into ½-inch pieces
fusilli or another short-cut pasta
(1 ½ ounces) basil leaves
(½ ounce) dill fronds, plus more to taste
(½ ounce) mint leaves, plus more to taste
full-fat Greek yogurt
mild-flavored extra-virgin olive oil
freshly squeezed lemon juice (from about 1 large lemon), plus more to taste
unsalted raw pine nuts or walnuts (pieces or halves)
(½ ounce) fresh chives
finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
medium garlic cloves, peeled and halved
kosher salt, plus more to taste
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil, then season it generously with salt.
- Add the green beans and cook until crisp-tender, about 3 minutes. Remove them from the pot with a spider sieve or slotted spoon and rinse under cold water to stop the cooking, or plunge into a bowl of ice water. Drain and pat dry, then transfer to a large bowl.
- Add the pasta and potatoes to the same pot and cook until tender, stirring and tasting occasionally for doneness, 10 to 12 minutes. (Note: Check the pasta cooking time on the package—if it will take less or more time to cook, adjust when you add it to the pot accordingly; the potatoes will take 10 to 12 minutes.)
- While the pasta and potatoes cook, add the basil, dill, mint, yogurt, olive oil, lemon juice, nuts, chives, cheese, garlic, and salt to a blender. Blitz until smooth, scraping down as needed, making sure not to run the blender too long or it’ll discolor the herbs. Taste and adjust if needed.
- When the pasta and potatoes are done, scoop out a cup of the cooking water, then drain them in a colander.
- Transfer the pasta and potatoes to the bowl with the green beans.
- Pour three-quarters of the dressing over the pasta and stir to combine, adding a splash of pasta cooking water to loosen and more dressing to coat as needed. Let stand for 15 minutes before serving; or cover, refrigerate for up to 3 days, and serve cold.