Fusilli-Basil Pesto Pasta Salad
Chef Patricio Duffoo
- 1 lb Fusilli Tricolore Pasta
- 2 cups Basil Pesto
- 1 lb Feta Cheese, cut into cubes
- 8 oz Kalamata Olives, drained and cut in half lengthwise
- 2 ea medium size Zucchini
- 2 pt Cherry tomatoes, cut in half
- Spice Tribe Porcini Paradiso Italian Blend
Spice Tribe Maras Chile Flakes
Spice Tribe Oregano Flower Buds
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 5 cups fresh Basil leaves without stems
- 4 ea Garlic cloves
- 4 tbsp Pine nuts (or walnuts)
- 2 tbsp fresh Lemon juice
- 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese (or Pecorino cheese for authentic Pesto Genovese)
- 1 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Basil Pesto (Yields approx 4cups)
Combine garlic cloves, lemon juice, and pine nuts in a food processor and buzz it until finely minced. Add Basil leaves and buzz it again, drizzle in olive oil while running the food processor at slow speed until smooth. Finally, add the grated Parmesan cheese until combined.
- Preheat your oven to 350F.
- Wash zucchini under running water, and dry it well with a paper towel. Cut zucchini into ¼” round slices and place them in a mixing bowl, drizzle olive oil, and toss the zucchini in oil. Sprinkle ½ teaspoon of Spice Tribe Porcini Paradiso Italian Blend and salt in the bowl and toss again to coat the slices evenly. Place the zucchini slices on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake for approximately 10 minutes or until starting to brown. Remove zucchini from the oven and let it cool off. At this point you can cut the zucchini wheels in half or leave it whole depending on your preference, cutting the zucchini wheels into halves makes them easier to eat.
- Bring 4-6 quarts of water to boil and add salt to taste. (You could do this step right after step #1 and before step #2 to save time!)
- Add pasta to boiling water and boil for 8 minutes for al dente pasta or follow package directions. Drain well and set pasta aside, reserving ½cup of the pasta water.
- In a mixing bowl big enough combine the cooked pasta, ½ tsp Spice Tribe Porcini Paradiso Italian Blend, ¼tsp Spice Tribe Mara Chile Flakes, ¼tsp Spice Tribe Oregano Flower Buds (give the oregano buds a crush between your fingers before sprinkling on to your pasta) and 2 cups of Basil pesto making sure to incorporate well and the pasta is evenly coated with the pesto sauce. Add Feta cheese, Kalamata olives, roasted zucchini and Cherry tomatoes to combine well.
- Pesto can be made the day before.
- You can eat this salad at room temp or cold.