First, I used rigatoni here and I am really glad I did.
Secondly, I almost did not type it.
Initially at least, as a main, it was a bit overwhelming.
All those walnuts. Lovely, though unusual and together with the ricotta and the Parmesan and the butter, quite something.
Indeed, we both agreed lovely, though maybe as a starter.
The next day though, I took a box to work with some sprinkled Parmesan and wow. What a lunch.
Not a low-cal lunch by any stretch, though what a bloody treat. I couldn’t get enough.
And then Nat messaged me and whilst she had a mush smaller serve, also agreed that it was just bloody wonderful.
So do it with rigatoni. And let it sit in the fridge for a day.
Because as with every Lidia Bastianich recipe, you’re onto a winner. Even if it does take one more day to fully get there.
2 cups walnut halves or pieces, toasted
2 plump garlic cloves, peeled
1 1/2 c ricotta
6 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
6 tbsp grated Parmesan plus extra for serving
3 tbsp chopped fresh Italian parsley
1 tsp salt
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
For the pasta
1 batch tagliatelle (use 500gm rigatoni)
3 tbsp soft butter
- Heat the water to a boil ready for the pasta.
- Put the walnuts and garlic in a food processor and pulse until the nuts are chopped into very tiny bits, though not a powder. Scrape the nut-garlic mixture into a bowl and stir in the ricotta, olive oil, Parmesan, parsley, salt and pepper, until thoroughly blended.
- Cook the pasta and when cooked, working quickly, and add to the walnut pesto. Drop the soft butter into the mixture, stirring to combine.
- Serve immediately in warm bowls, with more grated Parmesan at the table.