Two things: 1) there is no such thing as too much basil; 2) pesto is beautiful.
I had a huge tub of basil in my fridge and rather than making a traditional basil pesto I decided to make Giada's sun-dried tomato pesto.
It was simple, tasty, and addictive. Oh, and super quick. Although there are no nuts in this recipe, the pesto is rich from the cheese and olive oil. The sun-dried tomatoes add a sweetness, there's a nice kick from the garlic and red chili flakes, and the lemon zest brightens the pesto.
Will definitely eat this again!
Penne with sun-dried tomato pesto (Adapted from Giada)
1 jar of sun-dried tomatoes in olive oil (7.5 ounce jar)
4 cloves of garlic
1 tsp lemon zest
1 cup packed basil leaves (remove blossoms, they add bitterness)
1/2 cup freshly grated parmigiano reggiano
freshly ground black pepper
crushed red pepper flakes
In a large pot, bring water to a boil with 1 tsp salt. Cook pasta until al dente. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the cooking water.
Meanwhile, in a food processor blend sun-dried tomatoes with their oil, garlic, lemon zest, and basil until smooth. In a large bowl, add freshly grated parmigiano reggiano. Stir in pesto. Season with sea salt, pepper, and crushed red pepper.
Add cooked pasta and toss well. If needed, add some of the reserve water. Serve immediately.