Serves: 6 first-course servings
Prep time: 45 minutes Total time: 55 minutes
- 4 bacon slices, cut lengthwise in half, then crosswise into 1/2" pieces
- 4 C fresh corn kernels (cut from about 6 large ears)
- 1 large garlic clove, minced
- 1 1/4 tsp coarse kosher salt
- 3/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 C freshly grated Parmesan cheese plus additional for serving
- 1/3 C pine nuts, toasted
- 1/3 C EVOO
- 8 oz. tagliatelle (*Note: I couldn't find any so fettuccine had to do the trick. Any thick-ribboned pasta is ideal.)
- 3/4 C coarsely torn fresh basil leaves, divided
- Cook bacon in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until crisp and brown, stirring often. Using slotted spoon, transfer to paper towels to drain.
- Pour off all but 1 tbsp drippings from skillet.
- Add corn, garlic, salt, and pepper to drippings in skillet.
- Saute over medium-high heat until corn is just tender but not brown, about 4 minutes.
- Transfer 1 1/2 C corn kernels to small bowl and reserve.
- Scrape remaining corn mixture into processor. Add 1/2 C Parmesan and pine nuts.
- With machine running, add olive oil through feed tube and blend until pesto is almost smooth. Set pesto aside.
- Cook pasta in large pot of boiling salted water until just tender, but still firm to bite, stirring occasionally.
- Drain, reserving 1 1/2 C pasta cooking liquid. Return pasta to pot.
- Add corn pesto, reserved corn kernels, and 1/2 C basil leaves. Toss pasta mixture over medium heat until warmed through, adding reserved pasta cooking liquid by 1/4 cupfuls to thin to desire consistency, 2 to 3 minutes. Season pasta to taste with salt and pepper.
- Transfer pasta to large, shallow bowl. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 C basil leaves and reserved bacon.
- Serve pasta, passing additional grated Parmesan alongside.
(I should add that this dish goes superbly with a glass of lightly chilled chardonnay -- mmmm!)