Luciana’s Refreshing Summer Pasta Sauce

Luciana's Pasta Fresca

Luciana’s Pasta Estiva

If you like pine nuts you’ll greatly enjoy this quick, easy to prepare sauce Luciana makes during the summer months, and if you’re lucky enough to live where the winters are mild too you’ll find yourself enjoying it year round.

You’ll need:

  • A small bunch of parsley, minced
  • A garlic clove, peeled and finely chopped
  • 6-8 fresh basil leaves, shredded (and more for garnishing)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts (about 75 g), half finely chopped and the other half left whole
  • 20-25 cherry tomatoes (about 250 g), quartered
  • 6-7 fine slices of flat pancetta or lard (about 50 g), cut crosswise into thin strips (see note)
  • Salt and pepper or hot pepper to taste (go easy if you choose the latter)
  • A scant pound (400 g) spaghetti
  • Freshly grated Parmigiano (optional)

Luciana notes that Lardo di Colonnata, the cured lard from the hills above the marble quarries, is more delicately flavored than pancetta, and says that the choice is up to you – if you prefer more robust flavors go with the pancetta.

In any case, set pasta water to heat, salt it when it boils, and cook the spaghetti until they are al dente.

When you add the pasta to the water, heat the oil in a broad deep skillet and sautè the chopped parsley and garlic with the shredded basil for a couple of minutes, stirring. Add the lard or pancetta and the pine nuts, and continue to sautè for a minute more before adding the quartered cherry tomatoes and a small ladle of pasta water.

Check seasoning and continue simmering until the spaghetti are done. Drain them, turn them into the skillet, and toss them to coat them with the sauce. Garnish your pasta estiva with basil leaves and serve it with grated cheese on the side for those who would like some – it confers a slightly creamier texture.

The wine? Luciana is from Artimino, in the Carmignano Appellation, and I would go with Vin Ruspo, Carmignano’s light zesty rosè.

Yield: 4 servings of Luciana’s Pasta Estiva


Tags: , , , , ,

Categories: Tomatoey Pasta Sauces

Author:Cosa Bolle in Pentola

Italy boasts an astonishing number of varietals, denominations, and wines, and tremendous changes are sweeping the land. New wines are being created, new DOCs are being introduced, and the existing denominations are overhauling their regulations both to reflect the practices adopted by their member wineries and to favor improvements in quality. Even the most staid and stolid region can flower seemingly overnight, emerging with exciting new wines and wineries that require rewriting the enological maps and rethinking one's positions. And, of course, recipes too, because cuisine and wine are closely intertwined and it's difficult to imagine one without the other.


Subscribe to our RSS feed and social profiles to receive updates.

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: