Simple Cooks

Basil Pesto Pasta

(To Serve Two)

Ingredients: (for sauce) 

10 grams – basil leaves
2 tablespoons – pine nuts/chopped walnuts
4 medium sized – garlic cloves
3 tablespoons – olive oil
1 teaspoon – black pepper powder
½ teaspoon – salt

Ingredients: (for spaghetti)

250 grams – spaghetti or penne
150 grams – parmesan (any other cheese, like cheddar, will also do)
red chilli flakes for garnishing

If you wish to make it healthier…..
2 tablespoons – corn kernels
2 tablespoons – button mushrooms
1 teaspoon – olive oil
1 clove – garlic
2/3 pieces – black olives


1)Wash and boil the corn, till crunchy. If you are using the pressure cooker, one whistle will do.

2)Heat a teaspoon of olive oil in a pan. Crush a clove of garlic and add to it. Next, add chopped mushrooms and saute on high flame till the mushrooms are dry. Season with a pinch of salt and keep aside. (If you desire to add any other vegetables, like bell peppers, they must be cooked in the same way as the mushrooms)

3)Boil half litre of water in a huge pan. Add a tablespoon of salt. Let the water come to a boil. Add the spaghetti and cook on high flame till spaghetti is al dente. Strain the spaghetti in a colander and immediately separate the strands of the spaghetti under running tap water. (This will not only stop the spaghetti from going soft but also prevent the strands from sticking to each other). Then, leave the spaghetti in the colander to drain the water completely.

4)In the meantime, grind all the five dry ingredients of the pesto sauce along with 1 tablespoon of olive oil to a coarse paste.

5)Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a wok. Add the pesto sauce and saute for a couple of minutes. Add the spaghetti and the vegetables and mix well. Season with salt, if required. Cover and cook for a minute.

6)Before serving, add the cheese and sprinkle red chilli flakes.


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