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PESTO WITH GREEN BEANS AND POTATOES

PESTO

Pesto con fagiolini e patate

Liguria
Preparation - Medium
Serves 4

Yet another way to have pesto. Especially tasty during the summer months when basil and green beans are abundant and tender. If you use refrigerated or frozen pesto sauce, bring to room temperature before use.

1/4 cup pine nuts or walnuts, preferably toasted
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, peeled and halved
1 1/2 cups packed fresh basil leaves, washed and dried off on paper towel
2 medium Yukon Gold or red skinned potatoes, peeled, sliced about 1/3 inch thick
1/2 lb young tender green beans, in 2-inch pieces
10 oz trenette, spaghetti or linguine

In a small heavy skillet over medium heat, toast the pine nuts until golden, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir with a wooden spoon as they can burn in an instant.
Place the pine nuts, cheese and garlic in the food processor and chop very fine.
Add the basil, a pinch of salt.
Add a stream of the olive oil through the opening in lid of the food processor.
This is your pesto sauce.
It can be prepared ahead of time and refrigerated in a tightly sealed container for 3 days or in the freezer for a couple of months.
Cook the potatoes in lightly salted boiling water until just tender, about 5 minutes.
Test with a fork for doneness. Should take about 5 minutes. (Easiest is to cook in the pasta pot and simply lift out the inner strainer).
Remove the potatoes with a slotted spoon and place in a deep bowl large enough to eventually hold all the ingredients, including the pasta.
Add the green beans to the same water and cook till just tender. Should have a bite to it.
Remove with a slotted spoon or lift out strainer.
Cook the pasta in the same water till done to taste.
Drain, reserving 1/4 cup of the water.
Place pasta in bowl with the potatoes and green beans.
Stir 1 or 2 tablespoons of the reserved liquid into the pesto sauce to moisten it.
Toss the pesto with the potatoes, pasta and green beans.
Serve.
Have additional cheese to pass at table.

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