This Basil Pistachio Pesto recipe uses up a bunch of basil and pairs it with nutty pistachio. Adding blistered tomatoes and pasta is a great way to celebrate summer herbs and produce.
In the second installment of….let’s go through my hard drive and find all the posts I haven’t posted, here is a summer-y pasta!!
The pesto is super simple and the blistered tomatoes add a nice tartness and sweetness. I used this very big rigatoni pasta that I found at Whole Foods. I’m really into weird pasta shapes and whenever I see a shape I haven’t tried, I buy it. This shape is like a gigantic rigatoni and it’s perfect for this type of sauce.
How to Make Basil Pistachio Pesto:
- Blend it up. Basil is such an easy sauce, it’s almost all done in one step. Just add everything to the blender and blend until smooth! I like mine not super smooth so I pulse it to make sure it doesn’t over blend.
What Ingredients Make a Good Basil Pesto?
- Basil! This is an obvious one, but good basil is important, just look for larger healthier leaves when selecting it.
- Pistachios. Really any nut will do, but I like the flavor of pistachios here. If you don’t have pistachios just use the same amount of any other nut.
- Parmesan. Good quality parmesan! It doesn’t have to be top top shelf but a good middle of the road is what you want here. There’s lots of flavors so you need something that will shine through all of it.
- Garlic. Not too much though, usually more is always better with garlic but in this case it’s raw so it can overpower the pesto very easily.
- Olive Oil. Also important to use decent quality here as it is another flavor that tends to shine through since it makes up a larger portion of the pesto.
Can you Freeze Pesto?
Yes! Once you’ve made the pesto, whatever you don’t use you can place in a small bowl with a lid. Pour a thin layer of olive oil on top then place the lid on the container to freeze. When you’re ready to use the pesto just place in the refrigerator to thaw overnight.
- 2 cups basil leaves
- 1/4 cup pistachios, plus a few more as garnish
- 1/3 cup grated parmesan, plus more as garnish
- 1 garlic clove, peeled
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt, plus to taste
- 1 pound pasta of choice, I used big rigatoni
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 pint of tomatoes
- To a blender, add the basil, pistachios, parmesan, garlic clove, olive oil and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Pulse until very smooth, scraping down the sides as needed, for about 1 to 2 minutes. Give it a taste and adjust the salt to your liking. I added an extra pinch.
- To a medium skillet, set over medium heat, add the olive oil. When the oil is hot, add the tomatoes and cook until seared and blistered, about 3 minutes. Shake the skillet around every so often.
- Meanwhile, bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Boil the pasta according to the package’s instructions. Scoop out about a 1/2 cup of pasta water. We’ll use this in the sauce!
- Drain the pasta and transfer it to the skillet with the blistered tomatoes. Add the reserved pesto and pour in a few splashes of pasta water. Give it a good mix until the pasta is fully coated with the pesto. Add more pasta water if you need it.
- Divide the pasta amongst bowls/plates and garnish with parmesan and a bit of crushed pistachio.
Did you make this recipe? Let me know on Instagram!
Looking for more Summer recipes? Here are some of my favorites:
- Peach Shortcakes
- Strawberries and Cream Cake
- Whipped Goat Cheese with Grilled Peaches
- Olive Oil and Berries Cake