Friday, February 20, 2009

Fusilli in Sundried Tomato Pesto

I simply love sun-dried tomatoes. The first time I ever had them was on a pizza and ever since I've been absolutely hooked onto them. I've used them in pizzas, salads, savoury muffins, scrambled eggs - and yes, even in daals. They add a tangy and rich flavour to food and can transform food from bland to flavourful.

And the first time I ever made this pesto (based on a recipe I found here), I was in culinary heaven. Nutty, tangy and very aromatic, this pesto is something I have made over and over again and yet have never tired of it.

And add a little cream cheese to it and you have a delectable dip or a sandwich spread. Ummm, it is so delicious that writing about it is making me crave for some right now!

Fusilli in Sun-dried Tomato Walnut Pesto


Italian basil 1 1/2 cups
sun dried tomatoes 1/2 cup + 2 tbsps
walnuts 1/3 cup
garlic 2 cloves
red wine 1 tbsp
balsamic vinegar 1 tbsp
olive oil - 2 tbsps
sugar - 1 tsp
red chilli flakes, pepper powder - as per your spice tolerance level
salt - to taste


If you are using sun-dried tomatoes that are not packed in oil, you will need to re-hydrate them. Either soak them in boiling water for about 30 mins, or cover them with olive oil and refrigerate overnight.

Before making the pesto, drain the sun - dried tomatoes by placing them on a kitchen towel. Chop them up. Reserve the oil (or the water), I used this oil in place of the olive oil.

Tear the basil leaves with your hands - smell your fingers, don't they smell lovely - and add the other ingredients (except for the seasonings) in a food processor and blend in short bursts. You want the pesto to be a little gritty.

Transfer to a bowl and add the red chilli flakes, pepper powder, salt and sugar.

Cook the pasta as per the package instructions. Drain the pasta, but reserve a bit - about 2 tbsps - of the cooking liquid - I added a vegetable stock cube while cooking the pasta, makes the pasta a lot tastier. Mix some pesto in this cooking liquid and toss the pasta in the pesto. Add any veggies you want - I had only some carrots and bell pepper on hand - and digg in!

Sending this to Presto Pasta Nights hosted by Theresa and Its a vegan world:Italian hosted by Vaishali.

Oops, I think age is catching up with me...this is also for Lets Go Nuts: walnuts and pecans hosted by me.


  1. Beauitful dis, I love Pesto too. Love the veggie art there! :)

  2. Sounds the veggie art...

  3. i love sun dried tomatoes too .. yummy dish

  4. Looks lovely! Beautiful art with veggies...

  5. Wow, I made pesto too and i sent my entry. Sund tomat pesto is just a great idea!

  6. The veggie are is awesome there. I cut my hand cutting normal veggies, I cannot even imagine doing that :)

    And A is pasta king, so :P he will love this!

  7. Yummy dish with great combo..

  8. Sundried tomato pesto looks gorgeous..lovely orange flower..beautifuldish..

  9. I love italian dishes. Sounds delicious & YUM!!

  10. I am like u .. Love sundried tomatoes & this is a GREAT pesto!! I like ur idea of using it as a dip with cream cheese. this is the kinda pesto which u could have with anything...and as anything.

  11. looks and sopunds yummy. Something is waiting for you.

  12. It does look wonderful. Thanks for sharing with PResto Pasta Nights.

    I've always loved the classic basil pesto and only recently "discovered" all sorts of fantastic pestos. Thanks for adding another to my repetoire.

  13. Love pesto..The carrot flower looks fab..::)

  14. nice.. sun dried tomato pesto is yumm. after basil pesto, i like this one.. pestos are all delicious on pastas... prefer this than marinara anytime.

  15. The fusilli looks delicious, and that's one flavorful pesto. I am a huge fan of sundried tomatoes. Thanks, Aquadaze, for this lovely entry.

  16. Anything Italian is always a welcome:) I love pesto.Loved the veggie art:)

  17. thank you so much for your comments!

  18. this looks so pretty... I wish I could dress my food up like this.

  19. Pav bhaji, now pasta. I also have been making pesto recently.:)
    Love your carrot roses.


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