This dish features plenty of small but nutrient-packed elements, all bursting with flavor. Dainty English peas lend a fresh taste, while meaty morels add earthiness; aromatic basil and a light dusting of Parmesan complete the light, springy meal.
Pasta with English Peas & Morels
Salt and freshly ground pepper
8 0z. (250 g.) ditalini or other small tube pasta
2 Tbs. olive oil
4 oz. (125 g.) morel mushrooms, halved lengthwise
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 cup (4 fl. oz./125 ml.) low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
1/2 cup (2 1/2 oz./75 g.) shelled English peas (about 1/2 lb./250 g. unshelled)
4 Tbs. grated Parmesan cheese
1 lemon, zested
2 Tbs. chopped fresh basil leaves
Bring a pot of water to a boil over medium-high heat. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt and the ditalini and cook until al dente, about 10 minutes. Drain, reserving 1 cup (8 fl. oz./250 ml.) of the pasta water, and set aside.
Warm the oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and garlic and season with salt and pepper. Saute until the mushrooms absorb the oil, about 5 minutes. Add the broth and cook until the liquid is reduced by half, about 2 minutes. Add the peas and cook just until tender, about 3 minutes. Add the pasta to the pan along with 1/2 cup (4 fl. oz./125 ml.) of the reserved pasta water, 3 tablespoons of the Parmesan, the lemon zest and 1 tablespoon basil. Stir to combine. Add additional pasta water if needed to achieve the desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper.
Transfer the contents of the pan to a serving bowl or individual plates, sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan and basil, and serve. Serves 4.
Find more wholesome recipes for every day of the year in our new cookbook, Healthy Dish of the Day, by Kate McMillan.