Monday, January 21, 2008

Presto Pesto Pasta

Say that 5 times fast! :) This is a great weeknight meal. I am submitting this recipe to Presto Pasta Nights, hosted by Once Upon a Feast. I admit that this dish isn't very healthy, but I love pesto and this recipe looked like it would be wonderful. Well, I was not disappointed. It is a rich, creamy sauce and the pesto just puts it over the top. This would have been great with the shrimp that is called for in the recipe, or even chicken... but I made this after a long day at work and did not want to take the time to thaw anything out. I saved even more time by using canned tomatoes instead of dicing fresh tomatoes. So even though the recipe calls for shrimp, I've tagged this post vegetarian because it can easily be made vegetarian by omitting the shrimp.

I was in such a rush to make dinner that I forgot to add the tomatoes initially! It was only after I started taking some pictures that I realized something was missing! So that is why you don't see any tomatoes in the photo below :)

This makes quite a bit of sauce, so I am going to try to freeze half of it for later. Not sure how it will taste after it has been frozen, but next time I may just halve the recipe.

Pesto Cream Sauce
from Allrecipes

1 (16 ounce) package linguine pasta (I used angel hair)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
8 cloves garlic, sliced
1/2 cup butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups milk (I used skim)
1 pinch salt (I used much more salt, to taste)
pinch pepper (I used about 1/4 tsp)
1 1/2 cups grated Romano cheese
1 cup prepared basil pesto
1 pound cooked shrimp, peeled and deveined (I omitted these)
20 mushrooms, chopped (I omitted these)
3 roma (plum) tomato, diced (I used one 14.5 oz can of diced tomatoes, drained)

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain.

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Saute onion until tender and translucent. Stir in garlic and butter, and saute until garlic is soft and fragrant, about 1 minute. Dissolve flour in milk, then stir in. Season with salt and pepper, and simmer 4 minutes, stirring constantly. Add cheese, and stir until melted. Stir in pesto. Add shrimp, mushrooms and tomatoes. Cook 4 minutes, or until heated through. Toss with pasta until evenly coated.

Yield: 6 Servings


  1. the changes and omissions you made are exactly what I would've done (and will do).

    looks delectable!

  2. Freaking yum! This looks so good. Totally up my alley!

  3. I have to put this on my list to try. I love pesto and your dish looks wonderful!

  4. This looks SO creamy and delicious. I love the addition of the tomatoes to a pesto cream sauce.

  5. This looks so so sooo good, I'll have to try it sometime, but how many portions does it make?

  6. This pesto pasta sounds really good. The red tomatoes add a nice colour to the dish. The shrimp and mushrooms also sound like they would be good in this dish.

  7. Looks yum and a nice recipe. I have moved back to India. But i have not found ready pesto. I want to try this recipe, but any tips on how i can make a simple pesto sauce at home?

  8. The dish looks lovely with and without the tomatoes ;-)

    Thanks for sharing with Presto Pasta Nights.

    Archana, I have a simple pesto recipe. It's at the bottom of the post here...

  9. Looks very creamy and good! Thanks for the recipe.

    Sharona May

  10. This was soooo good. I made it tonight and everybody had seconds.

  11. the arbuckle's - thanks! i'm glad you enjoyed it. it's been a while, i definitely need to make it again soon :)