- 500g pasta
- 1/2 cup chopped sundried tomatoes
- 1/2 cup of bocconcini
- Shaved parmesan (to sprinkle on top)
- 2 bunches of basil leaves (or use half spinach and half basil)
- 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil (add as needed)
- 2 tablespoons pine nuts (or use walnuts, almonds, pecans or pepitas)
- 2 pinches of salt
- 1 clove of garlic
- Juice of half a lemon
- 1/3 cup of parmesan
- Toast the pine nuts for extra flavour (optional)
- Pulse the basil (reserve a few leaves), lemon juice and pine nuts
- Add the garlic and the cheese and pulse again
- Slowly pour in the oil (while processor is running). Continue processing until the mixture is well blended but still has some texture, pausing to scrape down the sides as necessary.
- Taste, and adjust if necessary. Add a pinch of salt if the basil tastes too bitter or the pesto needs more zing. Add more Parmesan if you'd like a creamier/cheesier pesto. If desired, you can thin out the pesto with more olive oil. Consider, however, since you're serving the pesto on pasta, you can thin it with small splashes of reserved pasta cooking water to bring it all together (see 'Tip'below)1.
Store leftover pesto in the refrigerator, covered, for up to 1 week.
You can also freeze pesto - for instance in an ice cube try. Once frozen, transfer to a freezer bag, then you can thaw only as much as you need later.
- Cook the pasta and add the fresh pesto to a big mixing bowl. Tip: Before you drain your pasta, place a liquid measuring cup in the sink. Then, pour about 1 cup of the pasta cooking water into the measuring cup before you drain off the rest of the water. That pasta cooking water is pure gold-it contains starches that create a creamy emulsion and help attach the sauce to the pasta. Off the heat, toss pasta, pesto and small splashes of pasta cooking water together until you're satisfied with the consistency (I used roughly ‚1/3 cup reserved pasta cooking water for 500gr of spaghetti).
- Add in the chopped sundried tomatoes and bocconcini
- Serve with shaved parmesan and a few fresh basil leaves