Pesto from Trapani

Pesto from Trapani

By
From
Sicily
Serves
6 as a main course or 8 as a starter

This makes a light, delicate sauce normally used for pasta but which is also good on fried fish or spread onto hot sourdough toast. This is the way our friend Marco Piraino prepares this traditional sauce. It is usually made without the aubergines (eggplants) but we loved the extra flavour and texture they offer. Use this sauce with fresh or dried pasta. In Sicily it is often served with the curly busiate pasta.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
850g fresh round tomatoes
100g blanched almonds seed oil, for frying
1 aubergine, cut into 1 cm cubes
1 garlic clove, peeled
salt
freshly ground black pepper
10g parmesan, finely grated
70g basil leaves
150ml extra-virgin olive oil

Method

  1. Make a cross in the top of each tomatoe and then plunge them into a bowl of just-boiled water for a minute or two until the skins split. Remove from the hot water with a slotted spoon and plunge into a bowl of ice-cold water to cool for a few minutes. Meanwhile, blitz the almonds in a food processor to a gritty texture and heat enough seed oil to deep-fry the aubergine in a small saucepan. Fry the aubergine cubes until lightly browned and then remove from the oil with a slotted spoon. Set aside to drain on kitchen paper for a few minutes to cool.
  2. Peel the skins from the tomatoes and discard the skins. Chop the flesh into small dice. Put the garlic, salt and pepper to taste, Parmesan, basil and olive oil together in a pestle and mortar. Grind until you have a rough paste, then add the almonds and tomatoes; give them a bash with the pestle then stir through. Add the aubergine last and stir to combine. Stir into hot cooked dried pasta, such as the busiate in the photo.
Tags:
Italy
Italian
Sicily
Sicilian
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