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Prairie Tomme Pesto Pasta

We love trying traditional recipes with our cheeses! This recipe is simple but all about technique. All you need is a few basic ingredients and you’re on your way to a beautiful dinner at home. Includes a recipe for homemade pasta but the real star is the pesto which can amp up any store bought pasta too!

Pesto Ingredients:

  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 3 cups basil leaves
  • 3 tablespoons pine nuts, untasted
  • 1/3 cup (or more!) of grated Prairie Tomme
  • 1/3 to 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

Pasta Ingredients:

  • 110 g semolina flour
  • 110 g 00 flour (can substitute all purpose flour)
  • 2 whole eggs 
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Pinch of salt

Pesto Directions:

Using a mortar and pestle, start by crushing the garlic and salt into a paste. 

Add the basil and continue to crush in a circular motion. Once it is broken down, add the pine nuts and repeat crushing. Then add the cheese and repeat. Add more cheese if desired! Using a spoon, stir in the olive oil, adding more if needed. 

Pasta Directions:

Combine flours on your countertop and create a well in the center. Add eggs, olive oil and salt to well. Whisk eggs with a fork and slowly incorporate the flour. Continue until most of the flour is mixed into the wet ingredients and mixing with the fork becomes difficult.

Using your hands, continue to mix dry and wet ingredients until a rough ball of dough forms. Knead dough for 10 minutes. Dough ball should spring back when ready. Rub with olive oil and wrap with plastic wrap. Set in refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. Can refrigerate overnight if necessary.

Remove dough from the refrigerator and cut into 6 more-or-less equal pieces (allow to sit at room temp for 30 minutes IF refrigerated overnight). Shape into rough balls and flatten with your hand.

Using a pasta roller, feed flattened pieces of dough through the roller. Fold onto itself several times during the first step, but not once you start rolling it thinner. Lightly flour as necessary. Roll to desired thickness then run through a pasta cutter. Lightly flour once cut.

Bring a pot of salted water to a vigorous boil. Add the pasta and stir with a pasta spoon to make sure it doesn’t stick. Cover the pot with a lid to help bring back to a boil. Once the pot reaches a boil again (1-2 minutes) the pasta is pretty close to ready. Give it no more than another 30 seconds. ** Collect some pasta water before draining **

Drain pasta and return to the pot. Reduce heat to medium low and add some pasta water and 2/3 of the pesto. Stir as needed and cook for 1-2 minutes. The pasta will soak up some pesto and the water helps create a sauce. Remove from heat and serve immediately. Top with a few dollops of the remaining pesto, a drizzle of olive oil (optional) and freshly grated Prairie Tomme (not optional *wink*). Buon appetito!

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