I see a lot of strange and/or cool things when I'm out exploring. While some are food-related, most aren't. I've decided to start posting the more interesting or scenic of my non-food photos to my LiveJournal for anyone who's interested. Please stop by.)
Happy Easter everyone! With spring finally upon us, all this sunshine has caused an explosion of growth in my herb garden. After spending the weekend putting everything in some semblance of order, I was left with a mound of fragrant clippings to "dispose". Most of them ended up in a tasty salad, but I also found some time to throw together a light pasta dish I thought you might enjoy.
My Smoked Salmon & Tarragon Pasta recipe was inspired by a similar dish I found in Diane Worthington's Cuisine of California, which I picked up at a bargain price from my local Borders Books. It's a great book for anyone interested in the California or New American style of cuisine that really took off in the 1980s. I highly recommend it.
Smoked Salmon & Tarragon Pasta
1 chef's knife, Santouku knife, or Chinese cleaver
1 cutting board
1 zester or microplane
1 mixing bowl
1 large pot
1 blender or food processor
1 large bunch of fresh tarragon (~1/4 cup removed from stems)
4oz smoked salmon (~112g)
1/4lbs English peas (approx. 1/2 cup shelled)
4oz of dry spaghetti (~112g/2 servings)
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 large lemon
2 tbsp caviar (I used whitefish, but salmon and flying fish will works as well.)
Kosher salt and cracked black pepper
- Wash the tarragon. Dry thoroughly. Remove leaves from stems and separate.
- Discard any woody tarragon stems and finely mince the remainder.
- Wash the lemon. Using the zester or microplane, remove the zest and set aside.
- Juice the lemon, removing any seeds or pulp.
- Shell the peas.
- Slice the smoked salmon into thin strips.
Using the blender or food processor, blend together the minced tarragon stems, lemon zest, lemon juice, and olive oil. Start with the tarragon, zest, and juice first, then slowly drizzle in the olive oil. Near the end, add a little Kosher salt. You want just the slightest hint of salt, since the caviar and smoked salmon also contain salt. Any sauce not used can be kept in the fridge for up to a week and also makes an excellent salad dressing.
Instructions (Smoked Salmon & Tarragon Pasta):
- Bring a pot of water and a teaspoon of salt to a roiling boil. Drop the peas in for one minute, strain, rinse under cold, running water, then set aside.
- Cook the spaghetti following the instructions on the package. I like mine al dente, but use whatever level of tenderness you prefer. Rinse under cold, running water and drain thoroughly.
- Toss the cooled spaghetti in enough sauce to lightly coat the noodles. The noodles should be slippery, but no sauce should pool on the bottom of the mixing bowl.
- Add the peas, smoked salmon, and tarragon leaves. Toss again to evenly distribute.
Plate and garnish with a tablespoon of caviar. Serve immediately.