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Fettuccini with Almond Pesto and Roasted Tomatoes

For the Pesto:

  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 cup whole almonds
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 tsp. salt, plus more, to taste
  • 1 tsp. freshly ground pepper, plus more, to taste
  • 3 cups (4 oz.) chopped fresh basil
  • 1 cup olive oil, plus more as needed
  • 1/4 cup  fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. grated lemon zest
  • 1/8 tsp. red pepper flakes
  • For the tomatoes:
  • 1/2 lb.  cherry tomatoes
  • 1 Tbs. olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1 lb. cooked fettuccini, cooked according to package directions
   To make the pesto, place the garlic in a food processor and pulse until coarsely chopped. Add the almonds, cheese, the 1/2 tsp. salt and the 1 tsp. pepper and process until the almonds are finely ground, about 1 minute. Add the basil, the 1 cup  olive oil and the lemon juice and zest and process until smooth, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl, stir in the red pepper flakes and add additional salt and pepper to taste. .
   To roast the tomatoes, preheat an oven to 400ºF.  Brush the tomatoes with the olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Arrange the tomatoes in a single layer on a baking sheet and roast until the tomatoes begin to look wilted but have not yet burst, about 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside.
   While the tomatoes are roasting, bring a large pot full of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook until al dente. Drain the pasta, reserving 1 cup of the cooking water.
Place  pasta back in the pot and add the pesto, toss to combine. If the sauce is too thick, slowly add the reserved cooking water, a few tablespoons at a time, until the desired consistency is reached. Transfer the pasta to a large serving bowl, garnish with the roasted tomatoes. Serves 4.

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