Pesto Pasta

This is such a practical dish. You can prepare it all in advance and then dish it out for lunch or a quick 20 minute weekday meal. There is little that is more comforting than a steamy hot plate of pasta full of fresh fragrant greens and bursting with flavour.

 
Ingredients

  • 1⁄4 cup pecan piecesolive oil
  • 2 cups tightly packed basil leaves
  • 1⁄4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1⁄2 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano, grated
  • 2 garlic cloves, quartered
  • 1 pound fresh or 12 ounces dried pasta, cooked and drained

Method

  1. Toast the pecans in a dry skillet set over medium-low heat until lightly browned and aromatic, about 4 minutes, stirring often.
  2. Pour into the bowl of a food processor fitted with the chopping blade and cool for 5 minutes.
  3. Add the basil, olive oil, water, pepper, salt, cheese, and garlic to the food processor.
  4. Close the lid and pulse a few times to break up the chunks.
  5. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula and process until fairly smooth. Alternatively, grind the toasted pecans, basil, pepper, salt, and garlic in a mortar with a pestle.
  6. Once it is finely ground, about like cornmeal, grind in the olive oil and water in small splashes, then stir in the cheese.
  7. Pour the pesto over the warm pasta.