Baking Hermann
Recipes

Cavolo Nero Pasta

A vibrant green pasta sauce that makes a quick & delicious pasta sauce.
45 min

This works a treat with most veg, if you prepare them a little. Roast some squash, blanch romanesco or just use sun-dried tomatoes in their oil. Most soft leafy veg and herbs like spinach, basil, and parsley are fine to use straight away. Swap kale for cavolo nero or ordinary kale. Just adjust by using less or more water, depending on what you use.

Veg, nuts, olive oil, bread, garlic and lemon make a fantastic pesto, but if you prefer to have a non-vegan option, you can always add a handful of good-quality aged cheese for that extra umami and creaminess.

 

serves 4

Ingredients

  • 50g sourdough bread

  • 75g blanched hazelnuts

  • 150g cavolo nero

  • 1 garlic clove

  • 75 ml olive oil

  • 4 tbsp lemon juice

  • 500g pasta of choice (I’m using orecchiette)


Method

Preheat the oven to 180°C and bring a large pan of generously seasoned water to a boil. Tear the sourdough bread into rough pieces, add to a roasting tray and drizzle with some extra virgin olive oil. Add the hazelnuts to the same tray and roast for 15 minutes, until the nuts are golden.

While the nuts are roasting, strip all of the leaves from the cavolo nero stalks and blanch them in the boiling water for 3 minutes. Remove the leaves (but keep the water to cook the pasta later) and cool them under a running tap or shock them in ice water. Then squeeze out any excess moisture and set the leaves aside.

Crush the garlic clove. To the bowl of a food processor, add the bread, hazelnuts, cavolo nero leaves, garlic, olive oil and lemon juice along with 1/2 tsp of salt and a few ice cubes (50g) or 50 ml ice cold water and process into a pesto. You might need to stop and scrape down the sides to blend it evenly. If it’s too thick, loosen it with a few more ice cubes or cold water. Don’t blend it too smooth. It’s wonderful to keep the different textures.

Bring the water back to a boil and cook the pasta as instructed. In the meantime, roughly chop any remaining cavolo nero including the stalk into small pieces and fry in a large frying pan with some olive oil and a generous pinch of salt until lightly charred. Set some of the charred pieces aside. Add the pasta to the pan along with the pesto and a bit of the cooking water and toss everything together. Don’t heat the pesto for too long or it will loose its vibrant green colour. Then serve the pasta topped with the charred cavolo nero and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.

 

Cavolo Nero Pasta

A vibrant green pasta sauce that makes a quick & delicious pasta sauce.
Active Time 10 minutes
Course Main Course
Servings 4

Ingredients
  

  • 50 g sourdough bread
  • 75 g blanched hazelnuts
  • 150 g cavolo nero
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 75 ml olive oil
  • 4 tbsp lemon juice
  • 500 g pasta of choice (I’m using orecchiette)

Instructions
 

  • Pre-heat the oven to 180°C and bring a large pan of generously seasoned water to a boil. Tear the sourdough bread into rough pieces, add to a roasting tray and drizzle with some extra virgin olive oil. Add the hazelnuts to the same tray and roast for 15 minutes, until the nuts are golden.
  • While the nuts are roasting, strip all of the the leaves from the cavolo nero stalks and blanch them in the boiling water for 3 minutes. Remove the leaves (but keep the water to cook the pasta later) and cool them under a running tap or shock them in ice water. Then squeeze out any excess moisture and set the leaves aside.
  • Crush the garlic clove. To the bowl of a food processor, add the bread, hazelnuts, cavolo nero leaves, garlic, olive oil and lemon juice along with 1/2 tsp of salt and a few ice cubes (50g) or 50 ml ice cold water and process into a pesto. You might need to stop and scrape down the sides to blend it evenly. If it’s too thick, loosen it with a few more ice cubes or cold water. Don’t blend it too smooth. It’s wonderful to keep the different textures.
  • Bring the water back to a boil and cook the pasta as instructed. In the meantime, roughly chop any remaining cavolo nero including the stalk into small pieces and fry in a large frying pan with some olive oil and a generous pinch of salt until lightly charred. Set some of the charred pieces aside. Add the pasta to the pan along with the pesto and a bit of the cooking water and toss everything together. Don’t heat the pesto for too long or it will loose its vibrant green colour. Then serve the pasta topped with the charred cavolo nero and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.

Notes

Tip: You can easily swap the cavolo nero and hazelnuts for other veg & nuts. Just keep the same ratio 2:1:1 (veg:nuts:oil). If you are using tender leaves such as spinach or herbs such as basil, you do not need to blanch them. You can also use roasted veg instead of leaves or even sun-dried tomatoes or roasted red peppers.
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