Basil and almond pesto pasta with broccoli, peas and zucchini
We use pesto to flavor everything from pizzas to bruschetta to soups. But more often than not we serve it the authentic way — tossed with pasta. Usually we make traditional Genoese pesto which combines fresh basil with pine nuts, garlic, Parmesan and extra virgin olive oil. But we also like to mix things up occasionally and use different herbs or nuts.
The pesto in this pasta dish is very similar to traditional pesto but instead of pine nuts we use toasted almonds, which add their own unique flavor and creamy texture. We find this pesto sauce tastes particularly good with broccoli, green peas and zucchini. And to make things extra easy, the vegetables are cooked in the same pot with the pasta!
⅓ cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
⅓ cup slivered almonds — lightly toasted
1 garlic clove — roughly chopped
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
⅓ cup extra virgin olive oil
7 oz (200g) spaghetti
1 head broccoli — cut into florets
1 zucchini — sliced into half-moons
½ cup frozen green peas
Variations: You can use an array of green vegetables including green beans, asparagus or snow peas, or try adding some fava (broad) beans to the mix.