Did you know why Pesto is called this way? What is the nut that you need to use to make Pesto? And do you know that the most delicious pesto you'll ever taste is the one you can do at home, in 15 minutes, following this recipe? If you're curious read on!
When I was organising my cooking class, I wasn't sure if people would be interested in preparing Pesto Pasta. After all, you can find Pesto everywhere in the world nowadays. But I love homemade pesto, so I decided to share some tips with my friends.
What did they think of it? Well, I think it's sufficient to say that Pasta was the first thing to finish, and a few of my friends ended up clearing the blender with a spoon to capture the last remaining drops of pesto. Do you think it's a good indicator?
I would say try for yourself!
The full PESTO recipe is below, together with the 6 steps to COOK PASTA LIKE AN ITALIAN.
50 gr basil leaves
Half a glass olive oil (approximately 80 gr)
30 gr Parmesan cheese
10 gr Pecorino cheese
15 gr Pine nuts
2 cloves garlic
10 grains coarse salt
PESTO literally means “crushed”. In the original recipe the ingredients are crushed together with a mortar and pestle, This method is still the best solution to extract the flavour from the basil leaves and avoid their oxidation.
Crush the garlic cloves with the salt grains. Add the pine nuts and keep on working the paste with the pestle.
Add the basil leaves little by little, and crush them with a rotational movement. Add the other ingredients a bit at a time while rotating the pestle.
If you're using a blender: crush the garlic and pine nuts in the mortar, then put all the ingredients in the blender with 3/4 or the oil.
TIPS: if you'll use a blender, follow these 2 basic principles to guarantee the best result: 1) use the spinning blade for as little as possible; 2) add 3/4 of the oil with the basil to make sure the ingredients blended well.
Making Pasta (the proper Italian Way)
Usually in Italy you would calculate 80-100 gr of pasta per person, or 125 gr if it's the only dish of that meal.
6 steps to cook pasta like an Italian:
Bring water to boil (at least 600 ml water per 100 gr pasta).
Add a table spoon of salt every 3 portions of pasta.
Add the pasta to the boiling water and stir for at least 15-20 seconds to avoid the pasta sticking together, or to the pot.
Follow the cooking time on the pasta box. Taste before turning off the heat, if you cook more than 500 gr it might take longer.
When the time is up use a sieve to remove the cooking water. If you are cooking pesto pasta, keep a cup of cooking water to cream the pasta.
Add the sauce and serve immediately!