Trenette con Pesto alla Genovese



  • 1 recipe for Jennifer White's Best Ligurian Pesto
  • Kosher salt for the pasta pot
  • 1/2 pound red potatoes, peeled, cut in 1/2-inch chunks
  • 1/2 pound fresh green beans, ends trimmed cut in 2-inch pieces
  • 1 pound trenette, trofie, or spaghetti
  • 1/4 cup pecorino, grated
  • 1/4 cup Grana Padano, or Parmigiano-Reggiano grated



Step 1: Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
Step 2: Bring salted water to a boil in the large pot (at least 6 quarts, with a tablespoon kosher salt). Drop in the potato chunks in boiling water, stir, and cook them for 5 minutes.  Drain potatoes, drizzle with olive oil and roast in pre-heated oven until tender and crispy.  
Step 3: Add the green beans to boiling water and cook the beans 10 minutes and then add the pasta to the pot and cook 5 minutes until the trennete is al dente. We used trofie for our pasta and it takes a little longer to cook. So if using trofie, start cooking the trofie first. After 5 minutes, add the green beans to the pot and continue cooking for 10 minutes until the trofie is al dente and the green beans are done.
Step 4: Set the large skillet over very low heat, just to warm it, or warm the serving bowl, whichever you'll use for dressing the pasta. Scrape the pesto into the pan or bowl, and loosen it with a bit of the pasta boiling water (and don't cook the pesto, just warm it).
Step 5: When the green beans are tender and the pasta is al dente, lift everything from the pot with a spider and tongs, drain briefly, and drop into the skillet or bowl. Add roasted potatoes. (If you prefer, drain the pasta and vegetables into a colander, being sure to reserve a cup or so of pasta cooking water before you pour it out.)
Step 6: Toss pasta, vegetables, and pesto together well-moistened with more pasta water if needed, then sprinkle the grated cheeses over, and toss again. Serve immediately in warm bowls.

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