Spring Pasta with Radishes and Peas

spring pasta with radishes and peas

Lemony and herby, dotted with sweet green peas, silky-pink (unspicy) sautéed radishes, and crunchy, butter-fried breadcrumbs, this pasta is springtime in a bowl. If you've got other fresh herbs -- mint or tarragon or even a few chopped celery leaves -- feel free to add them.

Total time: 30 minutes
Yield: Serves 4


    1/2 teaspoon kosher salt (or half as much table salt)
    4 tablespoons butter, divided use
    1 cup coarse fresh bread crumbs (pulse a piece of baguette or sandwich bread in the blender)
    2 tablespoons olive oil
    1 large shallot, finely chopped
    1 healthy bunch of radishes, washed, halved, and sliced into half moons
    2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice, plus 2 teaspoons of grated zest
    8 ounces orecchiette (or other dried pasta shapes)
    8 ounces frozen peas
    1/2 cup chopped parsley
    Freshly grated parmesan and freshly ground pepper


  1. Begin by bringing a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil for the pasta, then sauté the breadcrumbs: melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a small pan over medium heat, and fry the crumbs until golden and crisp, around 5 minutes. Set them aside.
  2. Put the pasta in to cook, and heat the olive oil and remaining butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Sauté the shallot until translucent, 3 or 4 minutes, then add the radishes and 1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt (or half as much table salt), and sauté until just tender, 4 or 5 minutes. Stir in the lemon juice (the radishes will turn bright pink).
  3. When the pasta is just tender, add the peas to the water, cook for another minute, and drain, reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking water. Add the pasta and peas to the radish pan along with the lemon zest and parsley, and stir, adding a few tablespoons of the reserved water, until the pasta looks nice and saucy. Taste for lemon and salt, and serve topped with the breadcrumbs, lots of parmesan, and pepper.

See all recipes from Catherine Newman's "Dalai Mama Dishes" blog.

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