A light, flavoursome and highly individual pasta dish which includes pear (or apple) and walnuts among its ingredients. Makes a great stand alone dish, or it could be served as a side dish for four. Adapted from a recipe from Australian chef flip shelton's 'green: modern vegetarian recipes'.
- 200 g spaghetti
- 200 g baby spinach leaves, washed well and roughly chopped
- 50 g gorgonzola (I don't like either of these, so I used 1 tablespoon parmesan and 2 tablespoons Greek yoghurt) or 50 g blue cheese (I don't like either of these, so I used 1 tablespoon parmesan and 2 tablespoons Greek yoghurt)
- 1⁄2 ripe pears, peeled, cored and very thinly sliced or 1 granny smith apple, cored and very thinly sliced
- 1⁄2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1⁄2 teaspoon dried sage
- 1⁄2 cup walnuts, shelled, roughly chopped
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- fresh ground black pepper, to taste
- Three quarters fill a large pot with water, bring to the boil, add the spaghetti and cook till al dente (about 8 minutes).
- Drain the spaghetti being careful to RESERVE SOME OF THE COOKING WATER.
- Return the hot spaghetti to the pot and, over a low heat, add the baby spinach leaves and cheese and stir until the baby spinach leaves wilt and the cheese starts to melt; add a little of the pasta water and continue to stir. (When I made this using yoghurt instead of cheese, I added very little water; judge how much water to use by the consistency).
- Add the pear (or apple), walnuts, thyme and sage, stir well, and allow to warm through.
- Drizzle with lemon juice, season to taste with freshly ground black pepper and serve hot.
- Notes: For a smoother sauce, in a small pan, over a very low heat, melt the cheese with some of the pasta water and stir in the pear (or apple); then stir in the spaghetti and baby spinach leaves, until they are well coated; then add the lemon juice and gently fold in the walnuts, thyme and sage.
Very good! Since I didn't have a pear, and I did have granny smith apples, that's what I used, DH sliced it wafer thin, so tart and crisp. I felt that I had quite a bit of spinach, but I do enjoy it, so that was fine. I didn't have walnuts, so I subbed macadamias, but another time will make sure I have walnuts, it is a completely different taste, I know. I used step 6, preparing the sauce separately, it worked well for me. Lovely pasta, bluemoon!
What a delicious combination - the pears, blue cheese, walnuts and lemon all compliment each other so well. I used fresh herbs, and just half an ounce of the cheese, since the kind I have is really strong (and added a little bit of chicken broth for the moisture). I subbed arugula for spinach and let it just barely wilt on the pasta before serving. Fantastic dinner!
Made the pear version and was totally delighted with how deliciously this turned out. I, too, used parmesan and Greek yogurt. I also used the entire pear and toasted the walnuts. Novel and definitely worth a try.