Red Pesto Tagliatelle Pasta

Red pesto tagliatelle with artichoke and greens
Red pesto tagliatelle with artichokes, olives and greens is easy to do from scratch and so tasty you want to make it again and again!

In our family there are some dishes that we cook regularly 2-3 times a month. This is one of them. Actually we didn’t even realize it was a vegetarian dish until writing this blog. The pasta and the sauce are so tasty that you won’t pay any attention if it’s a vegetarian dish or not.

We prefer cooking everything from scratch, but you’ll get a good tasting dish by using ready-made red pesto and tagliatelle, too.

 

Ingredients for Red Pesto for 4 Servings

  • 1/2 can (140 g, 5 oz. incl. the oil) sun dried tomatoes in olive oil – tomates secos en aceite oliva
  • 2 tablespoons of peanuts or pine nuts – piñónes
  • a handful of fresh basil – albahaca
  • 2 cloves of garlic – dientes de ajo
  • 1/2 dl (1/4 cups) of olive oil – aceite oliva
  • a pinch of sea salt – sal marina
  • a pinch of freshly ground black pepper – pimienta negra

Measure tomatoes, nuts, garlic and half of the olive oil into a cup. You can pour some of the olive oil from the tomatoes in, too. Blend the mixture smooth. If the pesto is too thick, add a bit of olive oil and mix some more.

When the structure is pesto-like, chop the basil fine with a knife and combine with the pesto. Don’t use stick blender to mince basil, because it (like many fresh herbs) become bitter if minced too much. Season with salt and pepper to taste and let it rest while making tagliatelle and the sauce. If you are using salted peanuts check the taste before adding salt. It may not need any.

 

Ingredients for Fresh Pasta for 4 Servings

  • 400 g (14 oz) of all purpose flour – harina de trigo
  • 4 eggs – huevos
  • a splash of extra virgin olive oil – aceite olive virgen extra

Making fresh pasta is easy. All you need are the three ingredients above. As you can see, the amounts match with the number of persons, too! It goes as follows:

  • 100 g (3,5 oz) of flour per person
  • 1 egg per person
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil per person

Actually the amount of olive oil depend on the eggs. If they are huge, go easy with the oil. And there’s no permanent damage even if you the mixture becomes too moist, because you can always add some flour to fix the dough. And it goes the other way too: if the dough is too dry, add another splash of oil. Easy.

Measure all ingredients in the kitchen robot bowl and let the robot run on low for 5 minutes. When the dough looks like in the 3rd picture below, stop the robot and go into manual mode. You need to kneed the dough for a couple of minutes to integrate the loose bits from the bottom of the bowl with the dough. When the dough feels moist, yet doesn’t stick to your hands, the structure is right! As mentioned before, add flour or oil, if the structure is not right. But usually with these measurements and medium size eggs you will reach success without hassle.

Cover the dough in plastic wrap and place in the fridge while finishing rest of the pasta.

Hint: make a double batch while you’re at it. The dough stays fine in the fridge up to 2 weeks so next time you don’t need to make the dough when you’re making fresh pasta! (That’s the reason why the dough looks a bit big in our pictures, we made a double batch, like we always do).

 

Ingredients for Red Pesto Tagliatelle Pasta

  • 200 g (7 oz) of artichoke hearts – corazones de alcachofa
  • 2 handfuls of spinach (or spinach and rucola mixture) – espinaca
  • 1 dl (1/2 cup) of olives – aceitunas
  • a pinch of sea salt – sal marina
  • a pinch of freshly ground black pepper – pimienta negra
  • parmesan cheese – queso parmesano
  • a pinch of flour – harina de trigo

…and of course:

  • red pesto
  • fresh tagliatelle pasta

Get the pasta boiling water ready by pouring 2 litres of water into a sauce pan. Season the water with a pinch of salt and pour in some olive oil. It prevents the tagliatelle from sticking together and also forms a layer on top of the pasta strips so they don’t begin to absorb the sauce in when mixed.

If the artichoke hearts are big, cut them in half. You can do the same for olives, if you prefer, but it’s not a must. Wash and dry the spinach.

Begin preparing pasta sheets. Divide the pasta dough into four balls and press them flat on floured surface and make sure the surface of the dough is covered with flour, too. Start from thickness setting #0 and begin rolling the pasta sheets. In our Marcato pasta machine we go all the way to setting #6 and then place the pasta sheets on a clean kitchen towel to rest. You can cut the pasta sheets in half in order to make the pasta easier to eat when in tagliatelle strips.

When the pasta water boils, you can begin to prepare the pasta sauce. Let the water boil, it won’t go anywhere.

Pour the pesto into a large sauce pan and add olives and artichokes, too. On medium heat warm the mixture and when it reaches comfortable eating temperature, add the greens.

At the same make the tagliatelle with the pasta machine and cook it. Stir the tagliatelle strips in the water right after pouring them in, because otherwise they might stick together. The pasta is cooked in 3-4 minutes.

Combine cooked pasta with the sauce and mix well. Season with salt and papper. Serve with generous amount of parmesan cheese and be amazed that actually is a vegetarian dish!

¡Buen provecho!

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