Pesto With Trofie
As we discussed recently in our Why We Love Pesto article over in the From Paesana, With Love blog, pesto is perhaps one of the most seductive of all Italian pasta sauces. Deeply imbued with the fragrance of fresh basil, the bright green sauce is never cooked or heated. Instead, the basil is presented raw so that its aroma shines through, while the other components including olive oil, garlic, pine nuts (pignoli), butter, and grated Italian cheeses are also given room to deliver unimpeded fresh flavor.
Old World cooks insist that if it isn’t made in a mortar with a pestle, it isn’t pesto. While this is linguistically true (pesto comes from the word pestare, which means “to pound or grind”), using this method is much, much more difficult than simply utilizing a food processor. As such, the modern method is the recipe we’ll be focusing on today.
When it comes to what type of pasta to pair with your pesto, you want to use a variety with some spirals or nooks and crannies. This helps the finely chopped ingredients in the sauce to cling to the pasta, ensuring every bite is full of flavor. While there are many varieties of pasta shapes that fit this description, our favorite for pesto is trofie. A short, thin, twisted pasta, trofie was first developed in the same northern Italian region that dreamed up pesto—it’s as if they were meant to be.
Now, let’s head inside from the garden with bunches of basil and start creating our pesto sauce—using pine nuts from Paesana, of course! This is a super simple and quick recipe, resulting in one of the most complex and dynamic pasta dishes you’ll ever eat!
Yield: 6 Servings
Ingredients For The Food Processor:
- 2 cups tightly packed fresh basil leaves
- ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons Paesana Pignoli Nuts
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped fine before putting in the processor
- Salt to taste
Ingredients For Use By Hand:
- ½ cup grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese
- 2 tablespoons grated romano cheese
- 3 tablespoons butter, softened to room temperature
- 1 ½ pounds trofie pasta