Spaghetti with scallion sauce

KP's Quality and Operations Support department provides superb data, analysis and consultative services to all the KP facilities in Northern California. They also have a lot of fun at work as a group. Sue Flautt from QOS, PJ Ballard from Media Relations and I were invited to judge their first Thrive cooking contest last week, which featured food from around the world. Never before had I tasted a Green Mung Bean and Pearl Tapioca Soup; it was excellent. The department created a colorful cookbook. Some of the recipes take advantage of the fruits and vegetables available at our farmers' market. I have always felt like a profligate cook when using scallions. Most recipes tell you to thinly slice the white part, a little of the light green part and discard the rest. This week's recipe uses the whole bunch. VB Farms in Watsonville grows the luscious organic strawberries sold at our market. Lately they have also been offering bunches of scallions, the root ends of which are a rich purple color. A few bunches of these and the usual white scallions make for a good sauce for pasta. Spaghetti with Scallion Sauce is an easy and economical main course. The taste is fresh and light with just a touch of lemon.

Servings: 4

Ingredients

  • 4 bunches scallions, about 4 cups, sliced (The bunches at our market are about twice as big as the bunches at the grocery stores.)
  • 3 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp freshly grated lemon zest
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
  • 1 oz parmigiano-reggiano grated, about 1/2 cup
  • 1 lb of spaghetti

Directions

Bring water to a boil in a large pasta pot. Sauté the scallions and garlic in 3 Tbsp olive oil in a skillet for about 5 minutes or until soft. In a food processor or blender, purée them. Add the remaining olive oil, lemon zest, salt and pepper. Purée some more. Cook the spaghetti. BEFORE dumping out the pasta water, mix 1/2 cup of it into the scallion mixture and purée to thin the sauce a little. Drain the pasta. Toss the pasta, sauce and parmesan cheese in the skillet over medium heat until coated. Adjust seasonings and serve.

Contributor

Preston Maring, MD