Pasta Primavera with Fresh Basil

3:19 AM

I always love this time of the year and loving it more here in Kolkata. The weather is pleasant with bright sunny days and soothing nights. There is a crispness in the air which makes it impossible for us to stay home in the evening. All we want is to go out and enjoy the fresh air. Though that is not much possible in a crowded city like Kolkata still we are going out every evening to have a walk around the locality.

Another thing that brings cheer to me is the fresh winter vegetables that have started appearing in the market. Though in this age of preservation almost everything is available the yaer around yet there is something special about the seasonal fresh produce. I love roaming around the local vegetable and fish market, touching and smelling just from the farm greens and vegetables.
All these together make me crave some fresh flavours and light saucy meals, which could be enjoyed while watching our favourite Programs. So this weekend when I found some fresh basil in our local Spencer's I instantly knew what I am going to make. So Pasta Primavera it was for us that night with loads of fresh basil thrown in for that heady aroma. I paired that flavour with some freshly squeezed lemon juice…together they were refreshingly comforting.
Pasta Primavera is an Italian –American dish where loads of crisp spring vegetables are added to the pasta. Primavera means spring so its wise to choose crisp fresh vegetables like broccoli, carrots, beans, onions, corns etc. The flavours here are kept very simple and mostly are finished with sprinkling of fresh Parmesan cheese. Our kid is a sucker of cheese and he could eat it as is. I chose an array of fresh vegetables including new potatoes, cherry tomatoes, broccoli, beans, fresh corn, capsicum, carrots, onion and loads of garlic. Here is how I did…

Pasta Primavera with Fresh Basil
Spaghetti: one packet
Carrot: 1
New potatoes: handful
Beans: 7-8 pieces
Capsicum: 1
Corn: 1/3 cup
Cherry tomatoes: handful
Broccoli florets: ½ cup
Onion: 1 big
Garlic: 4-5 fat cloves
Fresh basil: 1 cup; loosely packed
Lemon: 1 big
Olive oil: 3 tbsp
Chili flakes
Grated Parmesan cheese: ¼ cup

First prepare the vegetables. Wash them thoroughly under running water.
Peel the carrot and slice them in half moon shape.
Wash the baby potatoes and slice them in thick rounds.
Cut small florets of broccoli.
Cut the capsicum in thin slices.
Cut cherry tomatoes in half.
Cut beans in long pieces.
Chop onion in thick half moon shape.
Finely chop garlic and basil.
Keep everything separate.

In a big bowl blanch broccoli, potato, corn, carrot and beans with little salt for 4 minutes till they are tender yet crisp. I used my trusted microwave for this.
In a big bowl take lots of water and cook the spaghetti or any other variety of pasta according to the packaged instruction. Reserve 1/3 cup of pasta boiling water. Drain the spaghetti.

While the spaghetti is boiling start making the sauce. Heat oil in a big pan.

Add chopped garlic and chili flakes. Fry till the garlicky aroma hits you. Immediately tip in the onions and fry for a minute.

Drain the blanched vegetables and add in. Sprinkle little salt and sauté on medium for 2 minutes.

Add the capsicum, tomatoes  and half of the chopped basil.

Again sauté for 2-3 minutes till the skin of the tomatoes start to shrink.

Tip in the drained spagetti. Give it a good mix with all the vegetables.

Squeeze the lemon and also add the cooking liquid. Adjust the salt.

Sprinkle the rest of the basil, grated parmesan cheese and little chili flakes.

Mix and serve hot.
A Homemaker’s Tips:
You can also add mushrooms, olives, zucchini, spinach etc to make it vibrant and nutritious.

Pour some good extra virin olive oil just before serving the dish. It brings out the fresh flavours of the basil and veggies.

Non-vegetarians can also add sausage, chicken bits or roasted fish.

If you like roast vegetables try roasting the vegetables with little salt, pepper, garlic and olive oil in an 150C preheated oven. Boil the pasta separately and finally toss everything together with lots of parmesan cheese and olive oil.

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  1. This looks so good and lovely gorgeous colors on the plate sayantin ...looks so delicious:)

  2. This looks beautiful...Winter always has its charm, am waiting for the real winter to set in here, its still so hot !! Love the picture, looks delicious !!

  3. Wow..what a great looking pasta:-) Looks soo inviting! The fork is very cute!

  4. Perfect for winter dinners. Amar o ekhon eyi shob e cholbe ... spaghetti, stir fried vegetables with noodles, soups ... winter er shobjir eyi moja. Ar dinner gulo o koto easy hoye jaye tai na? :-)
    That plateful looks gorgeous Sayantani.

  5. The pasta looks very delicious. Great photography as usual Sayantani :)

  6. Super delicious platter, definitely flavourful and inviting..

  7. Hi Sayantani..its been long time :)

    The pasta looks tempting with all my fave veggies. I wish i could send you loads of fresh plants are generous :)

    Saw many of your festive recipes, will read them leisurely but loved all the pics. That elo jhelo is also called jibe gaja i of my friends used to treat us with these :)

  8. Pasta dekhte darun hoyeche. Ekebare phataphati and colorful.

    Hamaree Rasoi

  9. Wow !! Sayantani , mouth watering :)You have put some potatoes too , hmmm !!try korbo ekbar.Btw , that is a gorgeous table napkin.your photography is equally marvellous like your recipies.

  10. A perfect plate Sayantani! Will try it out soon it will be single person meals for me as my Dad will be away in Mumbai.

  11. Darun ,,hoechhe...try korbo fire giye....ekhon chinese ar Akgerian khe khe ..sudhu kalo jeere kacha lanka phodon diye maccher jhol khete ichhe kar-e ha ha
    Bhalo theko

  12. Colorful and delicious pasta with a lot of veggies.

  13. Wow.. that looks delicious.!! Amazing clicks

  14. spagetti looks colourful n lovely flavors....
    thanks for sharing!

  15. Light n fresh, lovely flavors in there! The pics are fantastic Sayantani!

  16. love the pic! I'm sure it tasted just as awesome too!
    I love your pics!

    Kavi | Edible Entertainment
    Ongoing event: Healthy Lunch Challenge

  17. such a delicious n colorful pasta...looks perfect

  18. This looks so inviting and comforting the idea of roasting the veggies...

  19. They are sooo much a delight... Can I have the plate pls???

    I loved ur Luchi and ALu tartari... H is soo much a bengali food lover... Am sure to recreate them sometime....

  20. Sayantani , aami ekta chotto dine of stencil paint US theke's in a cream form.Try finding a stencil paint here in the craft store.prothomoto , tumi aage nijer pochondo moto ekta design tracing paper e ready kore nao.Next , if you can find this stencil paint exclusively
    Then with the help of a round shaped brush lightly use it over the tracing paper.paint ta Jodi lequidy hoye , then it will bleed and spoil the work.that is why stencil paint gulo cream based more thing if you cannot find these kind of paint then try using acrylic but do not mix any water to it and for the brush use a sponge .ashte ashte chuye chuye paint effect ta eno.tracing paper ke chardikdiye choto sticky tape diye atke diyo so that it does not move. I did not have much trouble becoz my stencils were made of plastic.just holding with the other hand was good enough.
    So first go and see if you can find some stencil cream based paint.if not then use gold acrylic but no water.let me know what happens.I miss America for all this artsy craftsy stuffs .you find all sorts of things with ease there:)
    Sorry I had to answer your ques in this comment section.

  21. I agree; there is nothing like seasonal veggies. I love pasta primavera; your version looks delicious:)

  22. Sayantani , ekta stencil kora chobi post koro pls.want to see:)

  23. Yummy pasta,looks so delicious and well presented.

  24. pasta looks delicious...nice presentation dear..

  25. ahh.winter has its own charm buzzing with so fresh and green veggies everywhere..
    pasta looks yummy and colorful...will try potato in it the nxt time

  26. thanks everybody...

    @Poornima, glad that you tried this and liked it too...

  27. That's really spring on the plate...the pasta looks really fresh and inviting. I too love seasonal produces at this time of the year.

    Your presentation is superb Sayantani.

  28. Such a colorful and wholesome meal. Delicious!

  29. pasta looks delicious dear...looks so inviting !

  30. wow wat a tempting the clicks...Awesome.

  31. Love that the plate is filled with colors. Kids can gobble up..Yumm.

  32. Healthy n interesting dish, really luks gud...


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