Herb Pasta

Pâtes aux Herbes

Preparation info

  • Servings:

    3 or 4

    • Difficulty


Appears in

Simple French Food

By Richard Olney

Published 1974

  • About

This dough should not be rolled out on a machine—the uncompromising rollers force it into an amalgam in which the singleness of the savors is lost and flour is absorbed to excess. Also, it is better to pound the herbs in a mortar rather than purée them with the liquids in a blender—they remain, pounded, distinct and multiflavored fragments.

The herbs mentioned should be considered as among the many possibilities—any wild salad greens may be used and other herbs, depending on personal taste; strongly flavored herbs such as rosemary, common thyme, sage, savory, etc., should be avoided or used with a fine discretion. If you can gather together but three or four elements, don’t hesitate to try them; the spirit of the thing is just that—you put into it what you can find.

Lightness and delicacy are not among its attributes, so don’t try it on difficult guests. It is delicious—perhaps better—leftover and transformed into a gratin: The squares stick together hopelessly, so they should be taken en masse and sliced thinly, noodle-like, then “crumbled”—to loosen as well as possible the little noodles one from the other—directly into a buttered gratin dish, the bottom of which has been sprinkled with grated cheese. If the quantity of pasta is large, sprinkle cheese also over an intermediate layer. Pour over heavy cream, sprinkle the surface with cheese, and bake at 400° to 450° for about 20 minutes; the exhilarating wild green flavors are thrown into even cleaner relief this way, thanks no doubt to the cream’s sweet presence.