Tagliatelle with green sauce

    13 min

    This simple vegetable and yogurt sauce is ready in as little time as it takes to cook and drain the fresh pasta. It is bursting with fresh flavours and irresistibly creamy, but without the heaviness of a classic cream sauce for pasta. A salad of crisp radicchio and Lollo Rosso lettuce is a good accompaniment.

    4 people made this

    Serves: 4 

    • 225 g (8 oz) baby spinach, thick stalks discarded
    • 100 g (3½ oz) watercress, thick stalks discarded
    • 125 g (4½ oz) frozen peas
    • 500 g (1 lb 2 oz) fresh tagliatelle
    • 2 tsp cornflour
    • 200 ml (7 fl oz) Greek-style yogurt
    • 4 tbsp chopped parsley
    • 6 sprigs of fresh basil, torn into pieces
    • salt and pepper

    Prep:5min  ›  Cook:8min  ›  Ready in:13min 

    1. Rinse the spinach and watercress and place in a large saucepan with just the water clinging to the leaves. Cover and cook over a moderate heat for 2 minutes, stirring and turning the vegetables occasionally, until they have wilted.
    2. Add the peas and cook uncovered for 2 minutes – there should be enough liquid to cook them. Tip the greens and their liquid into a bowl. Set aside.
    3. Cook the pasta in a large saucepan of boiling water for 3 minutes, or according to the packet instructions, until al dente.
    4. Meanwhile, blend the cornflour to a smooth paste with the yogurt, and put into the pan used for cooking the vegetables. Stir over a moderate heat until it is just bubbling. Add the vegetables, parsley, basil and seasoning to taste and stir well. Heat the sauce through, then remove the pan from the heat.
    5. Drain the pasta and add to the sauce. Toss to mix with the sauce, then serve.

    Another idea

    For a creamy broccoli and pea sauce, replace the spinach and watercress with 200 g (7 oz) broccoli. Cook the broccoli in a little boiling water for 5–8 minutes, then drain, refresh in cold running water, drain well again and return to the pan. Mash the broccoli with a potato masher, then add the yogurt mixed with the cornflour and 5 tbsp semi-skimmed milk. Stir in 125 g (4½ oz) frozen peas and 2 spring onions, finely chopped. Bring to the boil, stirring, and cook for 1–2 minutes to thicken. Season to taste and add a dash of lemon juice if you like. Toss with the freshly cooked pasta, then sprinkle with plenty of chopped parsley.

    Plus points

    Cream-based sauces are always popular for pasta dishes. Traditionally, the sauces are made with heavy cream and cheese. This recipe uses low-fat yogurt to create a creamy sauce that is much lower in fat. * Heat can destroy vitamin C. The best way to cook leafy green vegetables, such as spinach and watercress, and still retain the maximum vitamin C, is to wilt them briefly. * Peas provide protein. They are also rich in fibre, some of it soluble, and this helps to keep blood sugar levels and cholesterol under control.

    Each serving provides

    Excellent source of vitamin A. Good source of calcium, folate, vitamin C, vitamin E. Useful source of copper, iron, niacin, vitamin B2, zinc.

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