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We study the Zodiac to learn harmony and balance. Understanding the Cycle of Life is like understanding the Tao, the interplay of opposing forces, all things in moderation. Harmony and balance also happen to be basic principles of fine cooking and sound eating. Enjoy the balance of harmonious flavors in this delicious, tasty pasta recipe from SIGNS & SEASONS.

Video of us preparing this recipe:


Conchiglie are shell-shaped pasta, whose hollows will capture the pesto and the peas. Cavatelli, orecchiette, or other concave pasta are suitable substitutes.

Serves 4 as a main course, 6 - 8 as a pasta course.

½ cup roasted, salted pistachios

4 cups baby arugula, washed and dried

½ cup chopped scallions

2 cloves garlic, peeled

10 basil leaves

¼ cup flat-leaf parsley

½ cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus extra for the table

¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

6 tablespoons olive oil

1 pound conchiglie

2 cups baby peas, thawed if frozen

Place all the ingredients except the pasta and the peas in the bowl of a food processor. Process into a near-smooth paste. If the mixture is stiff, add more oil. Remove from the processor bowl and put in a warm place. (Spin a cup of water in the food processor bowl to clean it out. Add this to your pasta water.)

Bring 6 quarts of salted water to a rapid boil. Add the conchiglie. Drain when the pasta is just short of al dente, reserving a cup of water. Return the pasta to the pot and place it on a warm range. Add the peas and some of the pesto. Toss to evenly distribute the ingredients. Add more pesto and reserved pasta water a little at a time, as needed to make the mixing easier and to finish cooking the pasta. Continue tossing until the conchiglie is cooked to your liking. Serve hot with grated Parmesan on the table.

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