Pasta sounds so much more interesting in Italian, doesn't it? Maybe I need to have all my pasta recipes translated into Italian to make them more beguiling.
I am very excited by this particular pasta dish. When you read the recipe, you will see how simple it is, but boy does it pack a punch. As I am writing about it my mouth is watering and my stomach is grumbling. Not such a bad thing you may be thinking, go whip up a bowl, but alas it is actually breakfast time here in Scotland, so maybe I should wait.
I found this recipe in a rather wonderful cookbook called Gino's Pasta by Gino D'Acampo.
Gino, a tv chef here in the UK, grew up on a farm in Torre del Greco, Naples and inherited his love of cooking from his grandfather or his nonno Giovanni as he called him. His grandfather, a head chef, taught gino to cook and he soon realised it was to be his life's work. He trained in a traditional catering college in Italy, then travelled Europe, working in many kitchens, before meeting his English wife and settling down in London.
Gino has a new show beginning in August on ITV called Lunch with Gino and Mel. If you are not in the UK, you can enjoy Gino's recipes from one of his five books: The Italian Diet, Gino's Pasta, Fantastico! Modern Italian Food, Buonissimo and Italian Home Baking. He even has an iphone/ipad app called Eating Italian.
OK, so at this point you may be thinking I am on commission or have a review copy at the very least, but no I am just in love with this chef after finding this book. I am pleased to say that the publisher Kyle Cathie, have kindly given me permission to post three recipes from Gino's Pasta.
Yield: serves 4
Spaghetti con Pesto alla Siciliana
This flavoursome Italian pesto recipe is made with sun-dried tomatoes, basil & almonds. It coats spaghetti like a comforting hug.
- 50g skinned almonds
- 20 fresh basil leaves
- 150g sundried tomatoes in oil, drained
- 4 garlic cloves, peeled and halved
- extra virgin olive oil as required
- 80g freshly grated Parmesan
- 500g wholewheat spaghetti
- salt to taste
- pepper to taste
1. Place the almonds in a frying pan over a medium heat and toast until golden brown all over. Set aside to cool.2. Place the basil and sun-dried tomatoes in a food processor with the garlic. As you start to blitz, pour in enough oil to create a smooth paste.3. Add the almonds and continue to blitz until creamy. Add more oil if necessary.4. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl and use a fork to fold in the Parmesan Cheese. Season with salt & pepper and set aside.5. Cook the pasta in a large saucepan with plenty of boiling salted water until al dente. Drain well and tip into the bowl with the pesto. Mix everything together for 30 seconds to allow the pesto to coat the spaghetti.6. Serve immediately, with a few basil leaves scattered on top.
Yield: serves 4
I am submitting my pasta dish to Presto Pasta Nights which is being hosted by Tandy of Lavender and Lime
I am also adding this to my event Bookmarked Recipes. Bookmarked recipes is an event designed to encourge you to make some of those bookmarked recipes you have from cookbooks, magazines and blogs. The only stipulation is that they must be suitable for vegetarians. If you would like to join in, just add your post to the linky at the end of this post. I will post the entries on the last Sunday of the month and open the next month's challenge.
Disclosure Statement: I did not receive this book free from the publisher to review. I borrowed this book from the library and gained permission from the publisher to print the recipe. The opinions I have expressed are my own.