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Beetroot fettuccine with sweet pea pesto

There are two things I love to see most when I check my post box. Firstly, no bills. Secondly, little packages of food. So when I received a Little Box of Yum recently, I was delighted to see inside was a packet of beetroot fettuccine. How novel!

First thing to do was find a recipe that would compliment this gorgeous pink pasta, so I called upon my foodie friend Toby Kennedy. I knew he would have something sensational to recommend.

This Sweet Pea Pesto recipe is fresh from Toby. I just estimated the portions of ingredients to taste. Oh and how fabulous is pecorino, it’s my new favourite cheese.

Ingredients (serves 4):

375g beetroot fettuccine

1 cup fresh peas, plus a handful for garnish (you could use frozen peas too)

1 clove garlic, diced

2 tbsp pinenuts, nicely toasted

½ cup grated pecorino

A few fresh mint leaves

A squeeze of lemon juice

1/4 tsp sea salt

1/3 cup olive oil


Add peas, garlic, pinenuts, pecorino, mint, lemon juice and salt to food processor. Blitz until smooth for a few minutes, scrape down sides, then with the processor running gradually add olive oil until pesto loosens. According to Toby, this alone is “ace spread on crostini.” I’d take his word for it.

Cook fettuccine until al dente. Drain pasta, and reserve half a cup of the water.

Return drained pasta to a large pan, add pesto and toss well. Add reserved pasta water in parts to establish a smooth consistency and leave on heat until the pesto adheres to the pasta. Taste and season if needed. I also added an extra handful of fresh peas here just for fun, I like the idea of seeing the little green balls of joy in the dish.

Plate and top with freshly shaved pecorino if that is your thing. Then all hail Toby Kennedy! And food packages.

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  • pete - this looks so delicious… the photography is so amazing…. pink is my favourite colour.
    have you ever tried making your pesto with UNTOASTED pinenuts, makes it creamierReplyCancel

  • Shelley - The pasta didn’t stay as pink as I thought it might – maybe it’s just the pics? Still looks delicious though! Also have a pot of your pea and lamb soup slow-cooking away……we’re busy painting today, will be nice have a hearty hot meal waiting for us at the end of the day! XxxReplyCancel

  • Peggy Saas - Thank you Pete. This is honestly my first effort at making pesto, so next time I will try it with untoasted pinenuts. Thanks!ReplyCancel

  • Peggy Saas - @Shelley, I know! I looked into the pot of boiling water and wondered “where did the pink go!” The fettuccine turned a natural colour once it was cooked, only downside. I would’ve loved it to have stayed nice and pink once cooked.

    Wow, I love that you have my pea and lamb soup cooking! Enjoy. You can leave it chunky at the end but I love my peas mushed up, so I popped my stick mixer in for 20 seconds to blend it a little. Chunky would be nice too though if you prefer it that way. Please let me know how it turns out, hope it’s delicious!ReplyCancel

  • Cindy - Looks lovely, fresh and simple to make I’m going to try it!ReplyCancel

  • Your One and Only Loving mother! - Looks great and your photos are amazing! I got squid ink (black in colour) so wonder if it’ll stay black after cooking it . Will keep you posted how I go. xxooReplyCancel

  • Megan Henry - Love peas! Little green balls of joy indeed : ) Must make this Peggy! And the photos are exquisite – that pea pod one is one of my favourites ever.ReplyCancel

  • Darren Agar - This dish makes my tastebuds tingle…i love the combinations you have included.
    I want some now..!ReplyCancel

  • EssentiallyJess - How do you make food look so beautiful? Honestly your photos are incredible. I’m in awe of how good those peas look, and I don’t like peas!ReplyCancel

  • Cherie @ Raising Master Max - Um, it starts out pink & ends up looking like straight pasta?

    I think I MAY even be able to convince my 2 year old?!

    Pinning as we speak!

    Thanks awesome lady xReplyCancel

  • cindy casey - Once again your photos have made this recipe look fabulous. I also love the sweet pea photo – amazing. Now I must try out the recipe instead of just drool over the photos.ReplyCancel

  • Maureen | Orgasmic Chef - Simple dish made perfect by beautiful ingredients! Lovely photos.ReplyCancel

  • Peggy Saas - Thanks Cindy, it was very easy to make and simply delicious!ReplyCancel

  • Peggy Saas - @Mum I have seen squid ink pasta cooked and it does stay black. I was a little disappointed this one didn’t stay pink, you know how much I love the colour pink! It sure started off pretty though.ReplyCancel

  • Peggy Saas - Thank you Megan. I must admit the little peas in the pod photo is one of my faves too. The pea is just too cute!ReplyCancel

  • Peggy Saas - @Darren I suggest you get your little masterchef to whip you some up, it is divine! Also great on crostini so I hear. It’s a very versatile little pesto.ReplyCancel

  • Peggy Saas - Thank you Jess. Put a person in front of my lens and I am at a loss, throw some food there and the ideas are abundant! I just love shooting food. And also eating it! ;)ReplyCancel

  • Peggy Saas - @Cherie, thank you lovely. Yes turned out looking like regular pasta, so a winner for the kidlets. I saw a pasta recipe on Pinterest the other day that consisted of multi coloured spaghetti for kids, looked amazing!

    Thank you for sharing sweets. xoReplyCancel

  • Peggy Saas - @Cindy haha drool away! I have a bad habit of sitting up in bed with my laptop browsing food blogs, it’s such a bad time to do that with all the yummy photos.ReplyCancel

  • Peggy Saas - @Maureen, it is a very simple dish. I was chuffed at how easy it was to whip up, yet so delicious. It’s the simplest of ingredients that often make the winning dish.

    Thanks for stopping by and saying hello. :)ReplyCancel

  • Sonia Life Love Hiccups - I had NO idea Beetroot pasta existed. Does the colour disappear once it is cooked? xxReplyCancel

  • Jennifer @ Delicieux - I love that photo of the freshly shelled pea! Absolutely stunning. I just adore fresh peas, and love your combination of the peas and the beetroot pasta.ReplyCancel

  • Peggy Saas - Hey Sonia, yes the colour does somewhat disappear, what a shame huh! I just love the pink colour of it raw. I never knew it existed either until I received some!ReplyCancel

  • Peggy Saas - Thank you Jennifer. A friend asked if I had photoshopped that pea into the shot, but I am proud to say I manually manoeuvred it to sit like that out of the pod. I really enjoyed photographing those peas!

    The peas and beetroot pasta combination was all Toby Kennedy’s idea, I knew he’d have a good suggestion and I wasn’t wrong!ReplyCancel

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