Pesto took its firmest root in the regions of Liquria, Italy. It still lovingly gets made with a mortar and Pestle. Use your favorite pasta. I use Jovial GF Fettuccine.
Join me on WPVM.ORG for Episode 4, of A Taste for All Seasons Radio Show.
I will share the history of pesto and walk you through making the original pesto with a mortar & Pestle... Slowly...
Season/ Summer Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 11 minutes
Makes 4 servings
A large bunch of basil, at 25-30 leaves
1 cup pignoli nuts, toasted
3/4 cup fresh parmigiano, more for grating over pasta
1/4 cup pecorino romano
2 garlic cloves, minced
3/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil, high quality
1 lb Jovial fettuccine
2 tbsp. sea salt for pasta water
In a dry pan toast pignoli nuts for 4-5 minutes, or until they turn a dark blonde color. Set aside.
When toasting nuts, do not walk away, as they can burn if over toasted.
Tear the leaves from the stems of all the basil. If using a food processor put the nuts in first, pulse a few times. Add garlic, cheese and basil leaves. Pulse a few more times. In a slow steady stream add the olive oil, until just blended. If you over mix it will make the pesto taste bitter.
Pour into a bowl. Add more oil if necessary. Let sit at room temperature while making the pasta.
Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil. You want it to taste like the sea.
Add pasta and bring back to a boil. Stir frequently as to not stick together. For Al dente cook for about 10-11 minutes. Taste pasta at 9 minutes. Drain well. Reserve 1/4 cup of pasta water to add before adding pesto, if pasta seems dry.
Either pour pasta back into the pot, and mix with a little olive oil, or in a large family style bowl. Add half of the pesto, and coat the pasta well. Plate pasta in warm bowls and top with more pesto and grated cheese.
Cooks Note: This recipe has few ingredients, so use high quality ingredients.
It also pairs well with roast chicken, omelette’s and Shell fish.