Pappardelle with Pea Basil Pesto and Ricotta

Food Photography, Inspiration, Recipes



  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for pasta water
  • 1 pound spelt fusilli (I used DeCecco Pappardelle.)
  • 3/4 cup fresh or frozen and thawed peas
  • 4 cups packed basil
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 1 garlic clove, pressed
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 cup low-fat ricotta
  • 1/2 lemon, zested and juiced


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add a large pinch of salt. Cook the fusilli/pappardelle until al dente, following package directions. Drain, reserving a few cups of cooking water.
  2. Add peas, basil, pine nuts, Parmigiano-Reggiano, garlic, and 1 teaspoon salt to a food processor and pulse to combine. Stream in olive oil and blend until smooth.
  3. In a small bowl stir together the ricotta, half the lemon zest, and the lemon juice.
  4. Add pesto to a large saute pan over low heat. Use a ladle to add small amounts of pasta water to loosen it. Add cooked pasta and additional pasta water as needed, tossing and stirring until coated.
  5. Divide pasta among 4 plates. Top each with a spoonful of lemon ricotta and a quarter of the remaining lemon zest.


  • Recipe by Ali LaRaia, the chef and cofounder at The Sosta in New York City. Based on the recipe in Shape Magazine. I also made tiny meatballs that I added to the pasta.

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