More Pasta

Pesto alla Trapanese (Sicilian)

Pesto alla Trapanese (Sicilian)

Print This Page Print This Page
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars
Loading ... Loading ...

Serves 4 to 6

1/4 cup slivered almonds
6 plum tomatoes, fresh in summer and canned in winter (Why?)
1/2-3/4 cup fresh basil
1 garlic clove, chopped
1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 lb fresh tagliatelle
1 cup caciocavallo or southern Italian pecorino cheese, finely grated

Heat water to boil for the pasta.

In a small sauté pan, toast the almond slivers over medium-low heat, watching carefully that they don’t burn. Set aside to cool.

Wash and dry the basil in a salad spinner. Grate the cheese and divide into two equal piles (1/2 cup each).

In a food processor, combine the almonds, tomatoes, basil, garlic, red pepper flakes, and salt. Pulse to combine for 15 seconds. Wipe down sides with a spatula. With the motor running, add the olive oil slowly, about 15 seconds.

pesto-trapanese-ingredients

When the water is boiling, add two small handfuls of coarse sea salt and stir to dissolve. Add pasta and cook until al dente. Drain the pasta, leaving 1/4 cup of water in the pan. Return the drained pasta to the pan and add the pesto and 1/2 cup of the cheese and stir to combine.

Divide the pasta among plates, garnish with the remaining 1/2 cup cheese and drizzle with a bit more olive oil.

Cook’s notes:

  • I like fresh pasta in this recipe because it soaks up the sauce so much more than dried, but if it is not available in your area, I recommend Martelli spaghetti.
  • I could not find caciocavallo, but my local cheese shop had a pecorino from Puglia that had nut and subtle banana flavors. Feel free to use Parmesan if you can’t find any of these. (As long as it doesn’t come pre-grated in that plastic green bottle! Freshly grated, by you, from a chunk of the real thing, please). Like I always say, half your work is done when you use the right ingredients; the other half is simply you introducing them to each other.
let there be bite twitter let there be bite facebook let there be bite youtube