Pasta with Vietnamese Pesto Recipe
- 1 pound dried rice noodles
- 1 1/2 cups chopped fresh cilantro
- 1/2 cup sweet Thai basil
- 2 cloves garlic, halved
- 1/2 teaspoon minced lemon grass bulb
- 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
- 1 tablespoon vegetarian fish sauce
- 4 tablespoons chopped, unsalted dry-roasted peanuts
- 7 tablespoons canola oil
- 1/2 lime, cut into wedges
- salt and pepper to taste
step 1: Soak rice noodles in a large bowl of cold water for 30 minutes. Drain the noodles, and set them aside.
step 2: Make the pesto: In a blender or food processor combine the chopped cilantro, basil, garlic cloves, lemongrass, jalapeno peppers, imitation fish sauce or salt, and 2 tablespoons of the peanuts. Whirl just until the herbs and peanuts are coarsely chopped. While the machine is running add the oil in a thin stream. Then add the remaining peanuts and run the machine in short spurts until the peanuts are coarsely chopped.
step 3: Place soaked rice noodles into a large skillet with 1/2 cup water over medium-high heat. Stir until most of the water has been absorbed and the noodles are tender.
step 4: Add almost all of the pesto, and stir well, adding a few tablespoons of water if the pesto is clumping.
step 5: Taste the pasta and add more pesto, lime juice, imitation fish sauce, salt, or pepper if you like. Garnish the pasta with the remaining 2 tablespoons of peanuts, and serve right away.