True Ligurian Pesto with Spaghetti

Total Time:
50 min
Prep:
30 min
Inactive:
10 min
Cook:
10 min

Yield:
4 servings
Level:
Easy

Ingredients
  • Sea salt
  • 4 cups packed fresh basil tops (2 bunches)
  • 1/2 cup EVOO
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 1/3 cup grated Pecorino Romano
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts, lightly toasted
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 large cloves garlic, pasted or grated
  • Pepper
  • 1 pound spaghetti
Directions
  • Bring a pot of water to boil, season it liberally with sea salt. Fill a large bowl with ice water.

  • Add the basil to the boiling water for 30 seconds or so and transfer to the ice bath. Drain and dry the basil in a salad spinner or on clean kitchen towels.

  • Place the EVOO in the food processor and add the basil, Parmigiano-Reggiano, Pecorino-Romano, pine nuts, lemon juice, garlic and some salt and pepper. Pulse process into a fine sauce. Store in an airtight container. Freeze or refrigerate to store for a make-ahead meal. Bring to room temperature to prepare.

  • To serve, bring a large pot of water to a boil, salt the water and cook the pasta to al dente. Reserve a cup of the salty cooking water just before draining the pasta.

  • Place the pesto in serving bowl. Add the starchy water and stir to combine, then add the pasta and toss 1 to 2 minutes to coat evenly. Adjust the seasoning and serve.


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