Tagliatelle with Baby Lima Beans & Buffalo Mozzarella

Have you experienced this dilemma: Do I cook pasta or potatoes? Then all of a sudden the little devil on your shoulder says: “Why don’t you have both?” The little angel on your other shoulder says: “No way! You have to make a choice.” “Says who?” asks the little devil.

And if you don’t make a decision right there and then, you’ll be standing in the kitchen for who knows how long, listening to your imaginary friends giving you cooking advice!

So I went with my gut instinct (and possibly greed…), because the dish I envisioned definitely included both pasta and potatoes. The pasta – tagliatelle to be precise – would be the main ingredient, and the potatoes – little cubes – would only be one of many other ingredients.

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The idea for this dish came mainly from the gorgeous sunny weather we’ve been having this last week, making you feel like spring is in the air, as well as from my see what’s in the freezer and use up as much as you can asap initiative.

So the pasta and potatoes would be joined by the baby lima beans I discovered during the freezer raid, plus some fresh garlic, some chilli, and lime.

I had initially planned to make a sauce to go with the pasta, but the only thing I came up with was stock and cream cheese, and I’ve done that a few times already, so that would have been boring. The alternative of white wine with cream cheese finally turned into a wine only version, which was a good thing.

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For one thing the combination of white wine, chilli, lime and capers went really well together. Then I cooked the lima beans according to instructions for 3 minutes in boiling water but decided to cook them in the white wine for the remaining cooking time. This way the wine had simmered down to about 1 tbsp of liquid in the end, which was enough to toss the pasta in.

This felt like a total spring dish when I made it, and it tasted like it, too. I had some left over and was worried it would be too dry when reheating it due to so little liquid being left, but it turns out you can just add a little more wine when reheating it (without it tasting like a wino dish with a little pasta on the side…), as long as the pasta doesn’t swim in it when it’s done.

A dish that’s put together quite quickly, too, and definitely worth making again!

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Tagliatelle with Baby Lima Beans & Buffalo Mozzarella

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

250 g Tagliatelle
6 small (new) potatoes
250 g baby lima beans
1 small onion
1 small garlic clove
½ habanero chilli
250 ml dry white wine
zest of 1 lime
buffalo mozzarella

Peel and cube the potatoes, then fry in butter until done. Put aside. Use the same pan for frying onions later.

In a pot of salted water bring lima beans to a boil and cook for 3 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a small food processor or blender, chop the onion, garlic and habanero chilli, then fry in the previously used heated, buttered frying pan. Just before the garlic starts to turn brownish, add the white wine.

Once the 3 minutes for the beans are up, add them to the frying pan, making sure they’re covered in wine. Add capers, salt, freshly ground pepper, and ¾ of the lime zest, reduce heat by half, and cook for about 15 minutes until the beans are tender but not mushy. [Check once in a while, and if wine seems to reduce too quickly, reduce heat again.]

While the beans cook, cook pasta in salted water. If the pasta is ready before the beans, add a knob of butter once drained to make sure it doesn’t dry out or stick together.

When the beans are done, add the pasta and toss. Divide between two plates, add cubed fried potatoes, sprinkle with the remaining lemon zest, and add torn pieces of buffalo mozzarella.

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