I love this dish because it is so easy and very tasty. The great thing about using a pasta shape like rigatoni is that it will hold the sauce well and has a lovely chewiness when cooked properly.
You can make this dish in the same time as takes to cook the pasta so it really is delicious health fast food. If you make too much pesto place it in a jar with a lid on and cover with olive oil. It will keep up to a week in the fridge. Have a good week!
Ingredients - serves four as a starter or two as a main
200g of rigatoni pasta
2 medium sized courgettes
100g fresh basil
50g pine nuts
1/2 clove of garlic
1/4 tsp of sea salt
75ml of olive oil
75g freshly grated parmesan
In a pot of boiling salted water add the rigatoni and cook for two minutes less than the packet says. If you are quick you can make the pesto and prepare the courgettes in the time the pasta cooks.
Cut the ends off the courgettes and slice them in half. Cut the courgettes into strips then cut again so they are the same shape as tagliatelle. Put them in the water with the rigatoni.
In a pestle and mortar, crush the garlic clove with sea salt until you get a paste then start pounding the basil so it goes mushy then add the pine nuts and pound until smooth.
Add the grated parmesan add a tblsp of water and mix in the olive oil so you get a lovely emulsified pesto.
In a non-stick frying pan add half of the pesto and warm up gently. Drain the pasta and the courgettes using a slotted spoon or pasta basket. Add to the frying pan with the pesto then add a ladle of pasta water and toss altogether until the starch has been released from the Rigatoni and thickened the sauce. Check the seasoning and plate the pasta. Drizzle over the remaining pesto on top. Serve with a glass of chilled Vermentino.
Follow Theo Randall on Twitter: www.twitter.com/TheoRandall