A nice light pasta salad is the perfect summer dish I feel. We’ve got one or two up our sleeves, but today I’d like to share with you Mel’s pesto pasta. It’s simple, straight forward, & completely delicious. He also goes light on the garlic so you can eat it on a date. If you’re going to do that, I highly recommend packing a picnic basket and heading to the park or the beach.
As for me, I’m quite content just hovering behind him & stealing pasta bits out of the colander & dunking bread in the pesto. I think he’s learnt he can’t leave me unattended in the kitchen, ever.
– 500g pasta
– 250g basil
– 50g parsley
– 50g rocket
– 150g pine nuts
– 80g pistachios
– 250g parmesan
– 1.5 cup olive oil
– 1 tsp sugar
– 1.5 tsp pepper
– salt to taste
– 2 large garlic cloves
– for both of the nuts, divide the quantities in half. Leave half raw, whilst the other half need to be toasted.
– to toast the nuts, place them in a frying pan (careful not to crowd) over medium heat. Make sure to stir them often until they are fragrant & darken a little.
– rinse & dry all the herbs thoroughly, roughly chop & mix in a bowl.
– cut the parmesan into small cubes & peel the garlic cloves. Set aside.
– to begin, place all the ingredients in front of you.
– using a food processor, add a handful of each ingredient & enough oil to allow the machine to thoroughly mix everything without it sticking to the sides. Transfer the mixture to another bowl.
– continue on this way until all the ingredients have been used.
– boil the pasta & serve fresh with some buffala mozzarella & cherry tomatoes for garnish.
1. Authentic italian pesto is made using a pestle & mortar. If you’re feeling brave & have some extra time on your hands, try doing it this way.
2. Adjust the salt & pepper at the end of the process because the parmesan is naturally salty.
3. Make sure not to over process the pesto. You do not want the mixture to turn into a paste, but rather maintain a grainy, slightly chunky texture.
4. Pine nuts can burn very quickly so make sure to keep a watchful eye on them.
5. Make sure to keep the pasta al-dente whilst cooking as it will be absorbing more liquid after the fact & will become overly soggy otherwise.
….for more recipes from us, check out our archives here.