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Almond Pesto from Saveur Easy Italian

For Mother’s Day Dinner I adapted a recipe out of SAVEUR’s recently released “SAVEUR Easy Italian“, a cookbook released as an iPad app. Being that is an e-book, each recipe has its own full color photo and are well laid out for easy reading. The book is laid out into sections covering 30 recipes that include starters, soups, pasta, main dishes and sweets along with sections a well stocked Italian pantry and wines. While there isn’t a lot of recipes, the ones in the book are well picked – and there are vegetarian recipes (or easily adapted ones) as well.

I picked the Almond Pesto from page 52. I left out the anchovies and pepperoncini due to personal taste and I didn’t miss them! The pesto is fresh, complex and so different from a typical basil version. It doesn’t taste heavy or oily. It would make a wonderful spread on bread as well. I served the pasta as a side dish and it served 6 adults, as a main meal I would say 3 to 4 at most.

Almond Pesto (Adapted from page 52)


  • 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes
  • ¾ cup slivered almonds
  • ½ cup fresh basil, packed
  • ½ cup parmigiano-reggiano or pecorrino-romano, finely grated
  • 5 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp golden raisins
  • 2 Tbsp capers, drained
  • 1 tsp garlic, minced (2 cloves)
  • ¼ tsp red pepper flakes
  • Ground black pepper and salt to taste
  • 13.25 ounce package multi grain corkscrew pasta (or 1 lb regular)


Make the pesto:

Place the tomatoes in a food processor and process until finely chopped, then pour the tomatoes into a fine strainer and drain of excess juices. Process the tomatoes along with the almonds, basil, cheese, oil, raisins, capers, garlic and red pepper flakes in the food processor until finely ground. Season to taste, if desired, and refrigerate until needed.

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil over high heat, add pasta and cook for time on package. Reserve ½ cup pasta cooking water and drain pasta. Toss the hot pasta with the pesto, adding the reserved water as needed (I used about ¼ cup) to make a smooth sauce. Toss with additional grated cheese and thinly sliced basil if desired.


FTC Disclaimer: We received a copy of the cookbook for review.

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