Maria Menounos certainly knows her way around the kitchen. The gorgeous actress and TV correspondent recently uploaded an Instagram picture of a delicious bowl of penne with the caption, “In the mood for some pasta??? I looove making this one w/ homemade pesto!”
Fortunately for us, the recipe can be found in her new book The EveryGirl's Guide to Cooking ($16; amazon.com), which focuses on healthy, easy-to-prepare recipes for any night of the week.
“You can add more or less of any of these ingredients and taste-test as you go,” Menounos writes of the pasta and homemade pesto dish. She adds, “This makes more than enough pesto for 1 pound of pasta. Reserve the leftovers to spread on sandwiches or add to soups and stews. The sauce will keep for a week in the refrigerator and in the freezer for a few months.” Try it for yourself using the recipe below.
Everyone Loves Pasta Pesto with August Tomatoes
Serves 4 to 6
1 lb pasta of your choice
5 cups packed fresh basil
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
6 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup pine nuts or chopped walnuts
3 cloves garlic, smashed
Salt and black pepper
2 large tomatoes, chopped
1. Cook the pasta according to the package directions. Drain, saving 1/4 cup of the pasta cooking water.
2. In a blender, combine the basil, oil, cheese, nuts, garlic, and salt and pepper to taste. Puree until blended and of the desired consistency.
3. In a large bowl, toss the pasta, reserved cooking water, and about 1 cup of the pesto. Toss in the tomatoes and season with salt and pepper to taste.