Linguini with Tomato-Almond Pesto
This dish is kind of like the Penne with Thai-Style Pesto, a quick simple meal where the food processor does all the work. These kinds of recipes have become really handy, especially because the boyfriend left for SF and I’ve been cooking for one. I especially liked this recipe because the pesto wasn’t that strong of an oil-base as other pestos and I loved the tomato chunks throughout along with the crunch from the chopped almonds. But the best part about this dish was that it took just minutes to prep and by the time the pasta was done cooking, the pesto was done as well. So there you have it, a nice, sophisticated dinner in less than 20 minutes.
Linguini with Tomato-Almond Pesto (adapted from Smitten Kitchen):
Yields 4 servings
- 1 lb linguini
- Olive oil
- 3/4 cup slivered almonds
- 1 cup fresh basil leaves
- 2 cloves garlic
- Kosher salt
- 6 ripe plum tomatoes, quartered
- 1/2 cup grated Pecorino or Parmesan
- 1/4 to 1/3 cup olive oil
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta according to package instructions; reserve 1/4 cup pasta water and drain well.
While the pasta is cooking, heat olive oil over medium heat in a small skillet. Add the slivered almonds and saute until toasted, about 2-3 minutes; let cool.
In the bowl of a food processor, pulse the almonds until they are in coarse pieces. (They should resemble the size of orzo.)
Add the basil, garlic and salt to taste.
Add the chopped almonds, tomatoes, cheese and olive oil; season with pepper, to taste. (This keeps the almonds separate from getting too finely chopped as you get the basil and garlic to the right texture.)
In a large bowl, immediately combine the hot pasta and pesto, allowing the flavors to soak. Add more pasta water as needed.