Perfect Barbecue Side Dishes: Farfalle with Salsa Verde & Grilled Ricotta Salata

Chances are if you’ve been to my house in the summer, you’ve had this dish.  I first had it our close family friend Judy’s house and have made it countless times since.

I take a shortcut and don’t actually make the salsa verde as shown below.  I simply buy a jar of salsa verde.  I boil water for the farfalle (bowtie pasta), lightly brush the ricotta salata with olive oil, and open the jar of salsa.  It’s that simple!

Tim usually throws the cheese on the grill for the final few minutes of whatever else he is grilling.  In addition to its wonderful saltiness, ricotta salata has a high melting point so it just gets a little softer on the grill.

This is a wonderful alternative to a more traditional pasta salad!
Farfalle with Salsa Verde and Grilled Ricotta Salata
Food & Wine

  • 3/4 pound tomatillos—husked, rinsed and halved
  • 4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 2 jalapeños, seeded and sliced
  • 1 anchovy fillet, chopped
  • 1/4 cup chopped basil
  • 1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/4 cup snipped chives
  • 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lime juice
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 pounds farfalle pasta
  • One 1/2-pound piece of ricotta salata
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped celery leaves

Light a grill. In a medium saucepan of boiling water, cook the tomatillos for 1 minute. Drain and let cool. In a food processor, pulse the tomatillos with the garlic, jalapeños, anchovy, basil, parsley and chives until mixed. Slowly pour in 1 cup of the olive oil, pulsing until blended but still slightly chunky. Stir in the lime juice and season the salsa with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

In a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook the farfalle until al dente.

Meanwhile, drizzle the olive oil over the ricotta salata and grill over a hot fire until lightly charred, about 2 minutes per side.

Drain the farfalle and return it to the pot. Stir in the salsa verde and the celery leaves. Grate half of the ricotta salata over the pasta and toss well. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer the pasta to a large serving bowl.

Grate the remaining ricotta salata over the farfalle and serve.

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