Lentils and Ditalini with Parsley-Mint Pesto
(Serves 4 to 6)
- 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 2 shallots, thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon pine nuts
- ¼ cup flat-leaf parsley
- ¼ cup mint leaves
- ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
Lentils and Ditalini
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 celery rib, finely chopped
- ¾ cup small French green lentils
- 1 ½ cups low-sodium chicken broth plus more if needed
- ¾ cup ditalini or orzo pasta
- ½ cup frozen peas, thawed
- 2 scallions, sliced ½” thick on a diagonal
- Zest of 1 lemon
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Combine the garlic, shallots, pine nuts, parsley, mint, salt, plenty of pepper, and olive oil in a small food processor. Blend until smooth.
- Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. Stir in the lemon juice just before serving.
- Heat the oil over medium-low heat in a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan. Add the celery and sauté until tender.
- Add the lentils and stir to coat them with oil.
- Add the broth; the lentils should be covered by liquid. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat, partially cover the pan, and simmer gently for 25 to 30 minutes, until the lentils are tender buy firm.
- Drain if necessary and let stand, uncovered, for 5 minutes
- Meanwhile, bring a medium pot of generously salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook according to package directions until al dente.
- One minute before the pasta is done, stir in the peas. When the pasta is ready, use a spider to lift the pasta and peas out of the water and add to the lentils, allowing the water drippings from the pasta to fall into the pan.
- Stir in the pesto, scallions, and lemon zest. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Serve warm or at room temperature.