Trofie al Pesto for the International Day of Italian Cuisines

Joining the worldwide ola of Homemade Pesto Genovese


Today, 17th of January is International Day of Italian Cuisines again, and this time is all dedicated to the Pesto Genovese.

As in the past editions, the IDIC is a worldwide celebration of authentic and quality Italian Cuisine, to defend it from bogus and counterfeiting. Hundreds of chefs and restaurateurs all around the world will prepare simultaneously on today Pesto Genovese with pasta, according to an authentic recipe.

All the food lovers too where invited to join the ola and cook some Pesto, and i couldn’t miss this international call to action.

The International Day of Italian Cuisines is born from a mission: “we certainly aim at educating worldwide consumers, but more than anything else, we want to protect their right to get what they pay for when going to eateries labeled as “Italian”, that is: authentic and quality Italian cuisine.” says Rosario Scarpato, GVCI Honorary President, and IDIC 2011 Director.




With this in mind,  today i won’t  just give you here the most classic and official recipe for the real pesto, but i will also tell you about the best combination of pasta you can have with this sauce.

But let’s start from the recipe as written by the cooperative of the Pesto Genovese:

- 50 gr of fresh young basil leaves.

- 1 big spoon of pine nuts

- 6 spoons of Parmigiano Reggiano or Grana Padano cheese freshly grated.

- 2 spoons of Pecorino cheese

- 2 garlic cloves

- 10 gr of  gritty salt

- Half a glass of  Extra Virgin Olive Oil (better if it’s from “Ligurian Riviera” d.o.p.)

- and finally 600 gr Trofie Pastificio dei Campi (the name comes from the genoese dialect and the way to call the manual movement necessary to create the shape).




The procedure is quite easy, but to be traditional, you will need a marble mortar and a wooden pestle. This because instead to chop the leaves you will need to crush them to have the leaves’ oil necessary for the sauce.

Wash the basil leaves in cold water and dry them on a paper towel. Don’t squeeze them.
Then crush in the mortar the garlic clove the pine nuts and the basil leaves, add  the salt, the Parmesan, the Pecorino cheese and keep pounding using a light circular movement of the pestle.

Add some of the Extra Virgin Olive from time to time and keep  mixing until  you obtain  a smooth creamy sauce. Pesto should not be greasy and the amount of oil used must be well absorbed and not floating on top.

Trofie and Trenette are the pasta used in Liguria, however linguine or spaghetti al dente will make a good companion to this sauce. The original recipe also says to cook the pasta in the water with french green beans and potatoes and serve all together dressed with pesto (more like a salad type of dish), but you can just mix this with pasta and will be great!

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