For this week's Presto Pasta Night hosted by Ruth, I've decided to feature another traditional sauce from Liguria.
Liguria is home to the ever popular Pesto so it's no surprise to find that this "salsa di noce" or Walnut sauce is also from this region. It's made in a similar way to pesto but instead of basil, walnuts are used.
There are probably as many ways to make this as there are Italians so to be safe, I will say this is my interpretation of the sauce.
Fettucine con Salsa di Noce/Fettucine with Walnut Sauce
Egg Noodle Fettucine
grated Pecorino, extra
75 grams walnuts
25 grams pine nuts
1 garlic clove, sliced finely
20 grams grated Pecorino
1 tablespoon Lemon-infused Olive oil (or add 1 teaspoon finely ground lemon rind)
1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive oil
Make the Walnut Sauce:
This step is optional - Place the walnuts in a bowl and cover with boiling water. Let them sit for 5 minutes to soften the skins. Strain and then brush away any loose skin.
Put the walnuts, pinenuts, garlic and pecorino into a processor and pulse until coarsely ground. Add the olive oil and process again until finely ground. You don't want this to be smooth like a paste, you still want to see small pieces of nuts.
You could also use a mortar and pestle to make this sauce if you so desire.
For this recipe, I'm using egg noodle fettucine - it's one of my favourite forms of dried pasta. Best of all it cooks in about 4 minutes. It's usually presented in these little "nidi" or nests.
While the pasta is cooking place a generous knob of butter into a pan and let this slowly melt - I'm looking to make a burnt butter sauce that will just add another dimension to this dish. As soon as the butter solids have coloured add in the walnut paste. Stir this well so it melts into the butter, you should get the aroma of lemon and garlic as the sauce heats up.
Toss in the drained, cooked pasta and stir well.
Serve into individual bowls and generously sprinkle over some more grated Pecorino.
It's fresh and light and makes an interesting change from the norm.
Tagged with Pasta