Wild Mushroom Agnolotti in Basil Pesto Butter

“You are not to cook for 8 weeks!” and “No BLT’s” stated the nurse at the Carolina Neurosurgical and Spine Center in a pre-surgery class filled with a group of patients and their primary care takers preparing for upcoming lumbar fusion surgery.

“Oh my God,” I said to my husband during the class that took place two weeks ago prior to the back surgery.  This rule for recovery was just as much of a shock as learning the amount of pain that would be encountered for the first 4 days after surgery.  Cooking requires a lot of “bending, twisting, and lifting . . . the three BLT’s”, the things that you cannot engage in for 8 weeks while wearing a back brace and healing the wounds of surgery.

“Prepare lots of frozen meals ahead of time, or have someone cook for you,  or order take-out” continued the nurse.

Well, ordering take out every single day was not an option due to the expense, the huge portion sizes, and the amount of salt and fat included.  And as far as having someone else cook in this household, let’s just say that my husband’s cooking skills are almost non-existent except for Sunday morning pancakes and sausage.

So that really put the emphasis on preparing lots of frozen meals.  And I’m not talking about frozen pizzas or frozen boxed dinners either!

Truthfully I do make and freeze a lot of frozen homemade meals, but I thought that I’d get creative this afternoon for lunch while my husband was at work.  These new rules for recovery from surgery are proving to be like a little cheat sheet in the kitchen . . . to give yourself permission to use frozen ingredients too!  So since I was in the mood for feel-good carb-laden pasta, I slowly went to visit my happy freezer to see what I could put together.

One shelf of my freezer is filled with frozen pastas, both filled and un-filled.  Naturally since my husband fixed spaghetti in a batch of my frozen Bolognese sauce two nights ago, I went straight for the filled pastas.

Hmmmm?  Should I bathe these little pillows of beauty in a sage-butter bath?  Sounds good . . . but hey!  My drugged up head came up with a better idea!  How about using up a small container of frozen homemade marinara sauce?  Even better, my GPS location system went to the shelf where little plastic containers of my frozen home-made basil pesto was crying out to be used.

The pesto won!

So while the wild mushroom agnoletti were swimming in the boiling water on the stove, I melted a half stick of butter and stirred in about a tablespoon of my thawed out basil pesto sauce.  Not too much now; these are delicate pastas.

PERFECTION!  What a delicate and sublime flavor combination!

“So there!  I can still cook while in recovery . . . just a little more creatively with the help of my friend, the freezer!”


Wild Mushroom Agnolotti in Basil Pesto Butter

What You Need:

  • 1 9 oz. package of Buitoni pre-made, frozen wild mushroom agnolotti
  • 1 stick of butter
  • 1 - 2 Tbsp. basil pesto sauce


  • Cook the mushroom agnolotti according to package directions.
  • Thaw out frozen basil pesto sauce.
  • Melt butter.
  • In a medium bowl, mix the hot butter and the basil pesto sauce.
  • Gently place the agnolotti in the warm pesto butter.
  • Toss lightly to cover the pasta lightly with the pesto butter sauce.
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Click on this link for the recipe for my homemade:  basil pesto sauce !


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  1. speechless! this is amazing! LOVE IT HOPE YOUR FEELING BETTER xo

  2. Geez I’m so sorry you’re having to go through all this, but you sure know how to continue eating well. Get well soon.

  3. Hi Claudia! Yes, amazing and easy!

  4. Hi Linda! Thank you so much; eating well is so important, for the mind and soul too!!

  5. I wish you a speedy recovery :) I thought this food was homemade. Way to go Buitoni !

  6. Amazing huh Ellen? It tastes homemade too!

  7. Oh, I love this sauce idea! I am definitely going to stock my freezer with homemade pesto so I can make dinners like this all winter long!

    Ugh, you had back surgery???? I hope you have a quick and uncomplicated recovery! Wish I lived nearby and I could cook for your! Or you could talk me through making some classic Italian dishes…wouldn’t that be fun? Take good care~

  8. Here’s to a speedy recovery, Roz. Listen to the doctor. I love frozen pasta and a quick sauce like this. A glass of wine is the finishing touch.

  9. oh bless thats a hard surgery much love and prayers and a speedy recovery

  10. Wonderful recipe. Wishing you a speedy recovery.

  11. I hope the recovery goes well Roz. It looks like you are prepared to continue eating well – this looks amazing.

  12. Yum! And vegetarian too :)
    Hope you have a speedy recovery – an enjoy a few take ways (restaurant ones!) too!

  13. Oh yes, Lizzy . . . you’re right, it’s a big UGH! And another yes, get that freezer filled with some fresh pesto!

  14. Debby, thanks much for stopping by. A nice glass of wine does sound lovely right now!

  15. Thanks Rebecca, for your support! All eyes are on England for the Olympics now!

  16. Sounds like a great meal! I love finding goodies in the freezer! Take care and wishing you a speedy recovery:@)

  17. Aunt B – Thanks and good healthy to ya too!

  18. You know so well, Larry, that eating well is good for the soul! Cheers to health!

  19. Thanks Lori . . . oh I KNOW that we’ll be enjoying some take home meals!

  20. Lynn, we couldn’t live without our freezers with our insanely busy lives and careers! Thanks for you well wishes!

  21. Gracious! I haven’t been by in awhile & had no idea you were going through all this. HUGS!! I hope that you get well soon.

    I don’t buy it often but this Riserva line of Buitoni is so good. I loved the wild mushroom! Looks delicious & makes me want some!!

  22. Wow, what a nice surprise Mary! Nice to hear from you again! Hope all is well in Mississippi!

  23. love that this is what you are making while you are supposed to be recovering! We are so much alike my friend. Nothing can stop us from cooking something- anything at all:) I LOVE basil pesto, i love pasta, i love mushrooms! This is my kind of dish. spectacular

  24. I hope you feel better and recover quickly, Roz!

    This looks like a wonderful dinner that I would be happy to eat any time. My basil grew so well this summer that I’ve already made a froze a large amount of pesto. I have to look for these delicious ravioli in my stores frozen food aisle.

  25. I love pesto! We eat it far too often ;-)

  26. A speedy recovery my friend, this has made me feel so hungry off to see about supper now. Take Care,

  27. You’ll be back on your feet before you know it Roz!!! Take care. Best wishes from Canadian Roz.

  28. Jessica, so good it tastes like home-made. My go-to in a pinch dish from now on!

  29. Thanks for your kindness Pat. I really, really appreciate it!

  30. Rachel, I agree — pesto is so versatile to jazz up anything!

  31. You are one of the sweetest, Lindy! Thanks so much for your well-wishes!

  32. Hope I didn’t miss anyone, so thanks to all for your visit, your comments, and your well wishes for my recovery from surgery! I love you all!

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