Genovese Pesto Sauce



For the pesto sauce:

3 Tablespoons pine nuts

2 cups fresh basil leaves

2 garlic cloves

Pinch sea salt

¾ cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano

1/2 cup EVO

Cooking directions:

1.        In a skillet, roast pine nuts until golden, 2-3 minutes over medium heat

2.       Clean basil and remove stems. Spin dry and set aside.

3.       Place pine nuts, basil, garlic, and sea salt in a food processor  

and process to a paste.

4.       Add cheese and drizzle in the olive oil.

5.       Store in a container, topped with oil.

Makes: 1 cup


For traditional Ligurian pesto pasta preparation:


2 medium sized potatoes, cubes and cooked until done, 5-7 minutes

1 cup young green beans, steamed, blanched in cold water, drained and cut into small pieces.

1/2 cup peas, steamed and drained

1 small zucchini, cut into small pieces, steamed (optional)

1 pound Trofie pasta (twisted, spiral shaped pasta from Liguria. If not available, Gemelli works fine, or any pasta for that matter.)


Cooking directions:

1.       Cook pasta until al dente.  Save 1 cup pasta water.

2.       While pasta is cooking prepare potatoes and green beans (or prepare in advance). 

3.       Put vegetables and ½ cup pesto sauce in a large bowl.

4.       Add drained pasta to bowl and mix gently.  Adjust amount of pesto to personal taste.  Add pasta water, as needed.

5.       Serve in warmed bowls with an extra sprinkling of grated Parmesan cheese

Serves: 6


Wine recommendation:  Pigato (a white wine from Liguria), Vermentino or a Sauvignon Blanc from Italy.