Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Pesto and Ricotta pasta

This is a quick and easy dish that you can toss together in no time if you have pesto on hand.
 As with most things, home made pesto with local ingredients is certainly preferable to store bought but hey, baby steps right. I made  a batch of pesto the other night, I was out of pine nuts which I do usually use in pesto but it is just fine without it.

Pesto is an all taste recipe for me, the basic ingredients ar:
olive oil
Romano cheese
pine nuts

Put all of your basil into your food processor, add 4-6 cloves of peeled garlic ( more or less to taste) add a pinch of salt and grate in some Romano. Add about a Tablespoon of pine nuts if you have them. Put the lid on your food processor and then turn it on to low as you drizzle in olive oil through the spout. I tend to make mine pretty dry as I don't like having to account for all the oil in it when I use it for cooking. Blend it until it has all come together as paste but not so oily that you can see the oil sitting on top of the paste. Pesto is always better after a day or so in the fridge for the flavors to blend.

For the final dish you will need
1/2 lb Pasta (something with some grooves is best)
3-4 Tbsp Pesto
1 cup ricotta cheese
salt and pepper

sun dried tomatoes
Shaved Romano cheese
fresh basil leaves

Boil a big pot of salted water for cooking your pasta.
Once your pasta goes down into the water heat up a pan large enough to hold all the pasta when cooked. Heat a tablespoon of oil in the pan and add the pesto and ricotta, add salt and pepper to taste. When you pasta is done to a nice al dente add a few tbsp of the pasta water to your sauce to thin if necessary and then toss in your drained pasta.

Serve immediately with some basil chiffonade, thinly sliced sun dried tomato and shaved Romano.

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