I’ve said it before, but I’ll gladly say it again…eating is good in the summer. Everything is so vibrant & fresh & needs little dressing up to enjoy.
We’re popping cherry tomatoes right off the vine & eating them then & there.
Corn is absolutely everywhere.
& I can’t think of better way to deal with an excess of corn than strip it fresh from the cobs, toss it around in a little bacon fat, blend it with cheese, & use it as a creamy sauce for pasta, topped with another of summer’s bounty…basil.
This dish is like a lighter version of a carbonara, perfect for hot summer evenings, without being too heavy. & it comes together so quickly & easily, you really have no reason not to pick up the ingredients & make it tonight!
PASTA WITH CORN PESTO & BACON
1 lb tagliatelle, fettuccine, or other pasta
4 slices thick bacon, sliced into 1/4 inch wide pieces
4 cups fresh corn kernels, from about 6 ears
1 large clove garlic, minced
kosher salt & freshly ground pepper, to taste
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
1/3 cup pine nuts, toasted
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
3/4 cup slivered basil leaves
Bring a large pot of water to a boil & salt generously. Cook the pasta, according to package instructions, until al dente. Drain, reserving a few cups of the starchy water.
While the pasta cooks, heat a large skillet over medium low to medium heat & cook bacon until crisp. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon & let drain on a paper towel lined plate. Leave the rendered fat in the skillet.
Add the corn & garlic to the skillet & cook until the corn is just tender & softened a bit, about 5 minutes. Set aside 3/4 cup of corn & add the rest to the bowl of a food processor. Add the Parmesan & pine nuts to the food processor & pulse to combine. With the motor running, drizzle in the olive oil & continue to blend until smooth, adding a little water if the mixture needs thinning.
Add the pasta back into it’s pot, along with the corn pesto, reserved corn, most of the basil & most of the bacon. Toss to combine, loosing the pesto with some of the reserved pasta water, if necessary. Season with salt & pepper, to taste.
Divide amongst serving dishes, top with remaining basil & bacon & dig in.
very slightly adapted from Serious Eats