I love pesto. The nuttiness from the pine nuts and walnuts and the parmesan cheese with the herbaciousness and earthiness from the basil and the slight acidity from the lemon juice (and it also helps the pesto from browning). The chicken adds some substance to the meal and the tomatoes add freshness, making it a light yet hearty meal.
I created this dish because I am completely addicted to my roasted butterflied chicken, can’t get enough of homemade pasta, and was craving pesto. If you are in a time crunch, feel free to substitute your favorite pasta and a rotisserie chicken. The pesto is super fast to make, you’ll be surprised. And you definitely won’t be disappointed.
- 3-4 C. fresh basil
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1/4 C. pine nuts, toasted
- 1/4 C. walnuts, toasted
- juice from 1/2 a lemon
- 2/3 C. extra virgin olive oil
- kosher salt and black pepper to taste
- 1/2 C. freshly grated parmesan cheese
Pulse nuts in food processor until finely chopped. Add basil, garlic and lemon juice and pulse until coarse. Slowly stream in olive oil until full incorporated and smooth. Add salt and pepper, combine. Add cheese last (otherwise the heat from the blades will melt the cheese and you’ll get a globby mess) and taste for seasoning, adjust as necessary.
- 1 lb. of your favorite pasta (I used my fresh linguini with semolina recipe)
- 1 roasted chicken, shredded (I used my roasted, butterflied chicken recipe)
- 1 package of cherry tomatoes, halved
Cook pasta as directed, reserve cooking liquid. Toss pasta with pesto. Add chicken and tomatoes and combine. Devour.