Spaghetti With Pistachio Pesto and Mint Ricotta

Menu PartEntree
Cuisine TypeItalian

Chef Todd English
Todd English’s Olives
Las Vegas

Fresh basil season is still weeks away in most parts of the country, but chef Todd English taps fresh arugula and parsley as the base for his pesto. Pistachios add texture and nuttiness to the sauce, and mint infuses the dish with a touch of springtime.


Pistachio pesto

½ bunch arugula

½ bunch fresh parsley

¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese

½ cup shelled pistachio nuts

Pinch kosher salt

Pinch ground black pepper

¼ cup pistachio oil

¼ cup pumpkin seed oil

Mint ricotta

¾ cup sheep’s milk ricotta

1 spring mint, in thin strips

Pinch kosher salt

Pinch coarsely ground pepper


1 lb. spaghetti

½ cup pasta water

4 tbsp. freshly grated Parmesan cheese


  1. Prepare pesto: Blanch arugula and parsley in boiling water for 20 seconds. Immediately shock in ice bath. Once cold, squeeze out excess water.
  2. In food processor, combine. Place blanched greens, Parmesan, pistachios, salt, pepper and pistachio oil. Process mixture until pureed but still chunky. Remove from processor to bowl; stir in pumpkin seed oil by hand. Set aside.
  3. For mint ricotta: In bowl, combine ricotta, mint, salt and pepper until blended. Set aside.
  4. For spaghetti: Cook spaghetti in boiling salted water for 8 to 10 minutes until al dente. Transfer spaghetti and ½ cup pasta water to saute pan; stir in reserved pesto. Place over low heat and cook 20 seconds.
  5. To serve, divide mint ricotta into four pasta bowls. Place spaghetti mixture on top and garnish with freshly grated Parmesan.

Photograph courtesy of American Pistachio Growers

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