Spaghetti with Watercress and Pea Pesto Recipe

This vibrant spaghetti recipe takes classic pasta and pesto up a notch. Homemade pesto is easy to blitz together in minutes – this veggie twist uses peas and peppery watercress and the dish is topped with an oozy poached egg.

Serves 4  - 10 mins to prepare and 15 mins to cook - 646 calories / serving


300g frozen peas
2 garlic cloves
85g bag watercress
2 tbsp hazelnuts, toasted
50g vegetarian hard cheese or Parmesan, grated, plus extra to serve
60ml olive oil
350g wholemeal spaghetti
4 eggs

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Bring a small pan of water to a simmer and add the peas and garlic. Blanch for 3 mins, then drain.

In a food processor, blitz together the peas and garlic, most of the watercress (reserving a few leaves for garnish), hazelnuts and cheese to a thick paste. Drizzle in the olive oil while continuing to pulse until the pesto is smooth and creamy. Season to taste.

Meanwhile, cook the spaghetti to pack instructions, then drain, reserving 1 tbsp cooking water. Allow to steam-dry for 1 min, then transfer to a large serving bowl. Cover with clingfilm.

Refill the pan with water and bring to a simmer. Make a whirlpool in the centre by stirring rapidly with the handle of a wooden spoon. When the whirlpool has almost completely subsided, crack the eggs directly into it. Poach the eggs for 3 mins over a gentle heat, then transfer to a plate with a slotted spoon.

Toss the pesto through the spaghetti with the reserved cooking water, then divide between 4 bowls or plates. Top with a poached egg, the reserved watercress, extra grated cheese and some black pepper.
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