Linguine with Pea and Mint Pesto: full of herbs & veg

Linguine with Pea and Mint Pesto

Recipe by Riverford Farm, tried & tasted by Annabel


Prep time


Cooking time





Perfect time of year to use fresh peas – this is such a fresh tasting pasta dish with all the veg and herbs.


  • 1 lemon

  • 30g pine nuts

  • 1 garlic clove

  • 400g garden peas (fresh if possible)

  • 15g sorrel

  • 15g mint

  • 1 large courgette

  • 15g dill

  • 175g linguine

  • 50g watercress


  • Put a large saucepan of salted water and a small saucepan of unsalted water on to boil. Zest half the lemon; keep aside.
  • In a large dry frying pan, gently toast the pine nuts for 2-3 mins, stirring now and then, until golden. Transfer to a food processor or blender.
  • Peel and finely chop the garlic. Add it to the pine nuts. Pod the peas into a bowl. Boil them in the small saucepan for 2-3 mins, until just tender, then drain and run under cold water to cool them. Shake the colander to remove any excess water. Add the peas to the pine nuts and garlic.
  • Finely shred 2 tbsp of sorrel leaves. Strip the mint leaves off their stalks. Roughly tear two-thirds of them up and add to the peas along with the shredded sorrel. Add 2 tsp of lemon juice. Blitz, gradually adding approx. 7 tbsp of olive oil, to make a coarse, slightly loose, pesto consistency. Season. Add more lemon juice, to taste. Set aside.
  • Peel long strips of courgette, working down and round until you reach the soft seedy core. Roughly chop approx. 2 good tbsp of dill leaves and thinly shred the remaining mint.
  • Boil the linguine for 7-8 min in the large saucepan, stirring now and then, until just tender with a little bite.
  • When the linguine is nearly ready, heat ½ tbsp of oil in the frying pan. Stir-fry the courgette ribbons and a couple good handfuls of watercress for approx. 1 min, until the watercress starts to wilt.
  • Drain the linguine. Toss it and half the pea pesto into the frying pan. Check the seasoning. Add more lemon juice and olive oil to taste. Serve, spooning over the remaining pea pesto and sprinkling with dill, mint and a little lemon zest.

Cook’s Tip

  • To make it lighter you can just add a little less oil and thin the sauce down with water or extra lemon juice.