Monday, August 4, 2008

At-Home Pesto Sauce with Fettucine

I'm finally moved into my new house and back in the kitchen! As I've written about, I'm experimenting with new recipes that I can incorporate into a healthy diet. Pesto sauce is delicious and contains healthy fats from olive oil and pine nuts. It adds flavor to plain pasta and bruschetta without taking over. I'm posting my blender-free method because hand chopping allows the separate flavors to sing rather than being, well, blended into each other. The pieces aren't uniform and the sauce is a bit "chunkier". The hand chopping is totally worth the extra effort and saves lots on cleanup. So let's get started!

2-3 c loose fresh basil leaves (I buy the live basil, it tastes much better this way)
1/4c pine nuts
3 cloves garlic
2 tbsp olive oil
pinch of sea salt

2 tbsp salt
1 box fettucine
1/2 c finely shredded asiago cheese
1 tbsp olive oil

Using a mezzeluna, pizza cutter or sharp knife cut 1/3 of the basil until very fine and almost paste-y. Place into a mixing bowl and move onto the next 1/3. You want to do this in batches to avoid bruising and pulverizing the leaves.

Once your basil is chopped, do the same with the pine nuts and garlic. Slice until very fine and incorporate into the basil. Add the salt and olive oil, set aside.

Boil a pot of water and add the olive oil and salt. Add your fettucine and cook until al dente. Immediately after straining add the pesto and toss until all the pasta is evenly coated. Top with asiago and serve!

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