Charred carrot skins provide a smoky contrast to the bright savory flavors of the unique carrot top pesto.
Chef Tip: Try using multi-color organic bunch carrots for this recipe for visual interest. The sweetness and the smoky charred flavor that the carrots add to this dish will not change, but multi-color carrots come in a range of colors including white, red, and dark purple.
3 pounds Barilla Collezione Bucatini
3 pounds carrots with tops
12 ounces grated pecorino romano cheese, divided
1 1/2 cups hazelnuts, toasted
1 cup + 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
- Bring salted water to boil in steam-jacketed kettle or large stockpot on stovetop. Add pasta; cook 2 minutes less than directed on package. Drain, reserving 1-1/2 cups pasta water.
- Meanwhile, cut tops off carrots. Peel carrots; place skins in medium bowl with 2 tablespoons oil. Reserve carrots for another use.
- Place carrot tops, 6 ounces cheese, nuts and garlic in work bowl of food processor. Process with 3-second pulses until just smooth. Slowly drizzle remaining oil through feed tube; pulse until mixed in.
- Heat large cast iron skillet on high heat until smoking. Add carrot skins to skillet; cook 4-5 minutes tossing frequently until charred.
- Transfer pesto to large bowl; whisk in reserved pasta water. Fold in pasta and half of the carrot skins.
- Serve garnished with remaining carrot skins and grated cheese.