Pasta with Tomato Pesto

Circle B Kitchen

Recipe courtesy Food52

I rarely follow a pasta recipe exactly as written, and this one needed no tweaking. But I did some tweaking anyway. :) I didn't change much, but substituted pine nuts for the walnuts and spaghetti for the capellini. Oh, and I used a mix of grape tomatoes and small romas that I quartered. None of those changes are earth-shattering, just personal preferences and the fact that I had bushels of roma tomatoes from the garden begging to be included. Oh, and I added salt. And used a combination of pecorino and parmesan cheeses. But other than that, this recipe is about perfect. :)

Serves 4

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 cup grape tomatoes

2 garlic cloves, peeled and coarsely chopped

2 teaspoons sun-dried or regular tomato paste

½ packed cup fresh basil leaves

¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes (or more if you prefer it spicier)

1 teaspoon kosher salt

¼ cup crumbled walnuts (or toasted pine nuts), plus more for serving if using pine nuts

¼ cup coarsely grated Pecorino, plus more for serving if desired

¼ cup olive oil, plus more for serving if desired

12 ounces spaghetti or capellini

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Meanwhile, in a food processor, combine tomatoes, garlic, tomato paste, walnuts (or pine nuts), basil, pepper flakes and Pecorino; pulse to combine. With motor running, add olive oil in a steady stream until a thick sauce forms.

Add pasta to boiling water and cook until al dente according to package instructions. Drain the pasta and place it in a serving bowl. Add enough of the pesto to coat the pasta well and sprinkle with additional Pecorino, some toasted pine nuts, a drizzle of olive oil, and some chopped fresh basil, if desired.