Creamy basil, pecorino and almond pesto pasta

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PHOTO: Misha Jordaan
PHOTO: Misha Jordaan
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 4-6
Cooking Time: 25-30
  • 125ml - toasted, salted almonds
  • 125ml - grated pecorino or Parmesan cheese
  • 2 - garlic cloves, bruised
  • - a handful of fresh basil
  • - a handful of broadleaf parsley
  • 80ml - olive oil
  • - juice and grated zest of ½ lemon
  • - salt
  • 500g - spaghetti or linguine
  • 15ml - butter
  • 5ml - flour
  • 250ml - sour cream
  • - juice of ½ lemon
  • - salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • - a handful of fresh rocket
  • - chopped chillies (optional)
  • - pecorino or Parmesan cheese shavings (optional)

1. Pesto Put the almonds, cheese and garlic in a food processor and pulse until finely ground. Add the fresh herbs and half the olive oil. Pulse until roughly chopped. 

2. Add the rest of the olive oil and pulse until well combined. Add the lemon juice and zest and pulse until smooth. Season with salt. Transfer the pesto to a clean jar and store in the fridge for up to a week. 

3. Pasta Cook the pasta in salted water until al dente. Drain, but set aside 125ml (½c) of the pasta water. 

4. Heat the butter in a deep pan or pot and stir in the flour. Turn the heat down and stir in the sour cream. Add half the pesto and all the pasta water. Mix the pasta into the sauce. 

5. Season with the lemon juice, salt and pepper. Mix in the rocket and dish up in bowls. 

6. Add more pesto on top of each portion of pasta and finish with the chillies and cheese (if using). 

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