The Sauce Fiend Chronicles: kinda classic Pesto

Basil, Parsley, & Arugula Pesto

Basil, Parsley, & Arugula Pesto

Pesto is one of those things I make when I’m feeling rather Bilbo Baggins-esque.  You know that scene, in the book and the movie, where Bilbo is running about trying to find snacks for Gandalf?  A zillion things on his mind, from birthday parties to food to, you know, Isildur’s Bane aka the One Ring?

 …I feel all thin, sort of stretched, if you know what I mean:
like butter that has been scraped over too much bread.

 Ok, ok, maybe not everyone has pretty much all of LOTR memorized but you get it, right?!  When you’re so busy that your brain is pretty much constantly out to lunch and your to-do list seems insurmountable?  It’s those days that I reach for the food processor and whip up a batch of pesto.

The wonderful thing about this sauce is that it takes about 5 minutes to throw together and every bite is as fresh as summer giving you an extra pep in your step that is so needed in those oh-so busy times.

Basil, Parsley & Arugula Pesto

Serves 4, with some leftover for lunch

2 cups loosely packed basil
1 cup loosely packed parsley
2 cups loosely packed arugula
½ cup grated pecorino cheese
3 tablespoons walnuts
1 - 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 ½ teaspoons lemon zest
3 tablespoons lemon juice
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
500g dry pasta

Place all of the ingredients other than the dry pasta in the bowl of a food processor or in a blender and pulse until well combined.  Set this aside and cook the pasta in heavily salted boiling water until al dente.

When the pasta is cooked, scoop about a cup of the starchy water from the pot and drain the rest.  Transfer the pasta back into the pot and pour on the pesto.  Stir until everything is evenly coated, adding about ½ cup or more of the reserved cooking liquid to thin the pesto out as needed.

Serve topped with a few shavings of pecorino, a sprinkling of salt and pepper, and a squidge of lemon juice to brighten everything up.