It's been far too long since I shared a recipe with you.
The other night, Alan and I were getting hungry and wondering what to make for dinner. We had oranges on hand, and olives, and lots of pasta (we stocked up while we were in Windsor). It was time to make one of my favourite pasta dishes.
I cannot now remember where I first came across this recipe, but it seemed like such an unusual combination of flavours, I had to try it. I figure the worst thing that can happen when I try a new recipe is that I won't like it. I'll move on. I'll try something else. This turned out to be the best-case scenario; a new favourite was discovered.
It's a really easy sauce to make and works with short or long pasta. The way we do it, measurements are so far from exact...
While the water is boiling and your pasta is cooking, heat some butter and olive oil in a pan. Grate the zest of an orange and add it and its juice to the pan. Pit a cup or so of Kalamata olives. Chop them roughly and add them to the orange juice and zest. Add a heaping tablespoon of basil pesto (or chopped fresh basil, if you have it). Toasted pine nuts, if you have them, really go well in this sauce, but it's tasty enough without.
Let the sauce bubble a bit until the flavours meld. Taste it and if it seems too sharp, add some more butter.
Toss with the cooked pasta and top with freshly grated parmesan cheese and ground pepper.
Serve with a glass of red wine and some good bread to sop up the juices.