Trofie al Pesto from Liguria

During this past summer, we drove from Spain all the way to the Liguria coast of Italy. Just after crossing the Italian border we stopped for lunch at the coastal town of San Remo. A must-eat in the Liguria region is Pesto sauce. The traditional dish is made with Trofie (a short, thin and twisted pasta), mixed with boiled potatoes and baby green beans. A must try! I am sharing this recipe so you can have a little bit of Liguria at home.


350 grams trofie pasta

40 grams basil

2 cloves garlic

40 grams pine nuts

20 grams pecorino cheese

20 grams parmesan cheese (good quality)

2 yellow potatoes

150 grams baby green beans

Extra virgin olive oil

Pinch of salt and pepper


Wash and dry the basil leaves well, then put them in a marble mortar along with the salt. Begin to crush all with the pestle, then add peeled garlic, pine nuts and, little by little, the two types of grated cheese. When you obtain a smooth cream, put the mixture into a bowl and add the oil slowly, calculating about 5 tablespoons; stir constantly with a wooden spoon until the mixture is creamy. Keep it aside. You can follow the same steps doing it in a blender.

Wash the potatoes, peel and cut into cubes. Clean the green beans eliminating the ends; wash and cut in two. In a saucepan, bring to a boil plenty of water, add salt and cook the potatoes. After 5 minutes, add the green beans and, after another 8 minutes, drain and set aside.

In another pot with boiling water cook the trofie pasta following the package instructions. When the pasta is cooked al dente, drain and mix with vegetables and season with the pesto. You will have to soften the sauce with a few tablespoons of the cooking water, which is drawn in advance so that it has had time to cool.

Mix and serve, accompanying to taste with more grated cheese.