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Author Notes: A fresh, summery Sicilian pesto with almonds and fresh tomatoes as the protagonists. This is only lightly adapted from a recipe from La Cucina Accademia Italiana. - Emiko
- 10 ripe plum tomatoes (San Marzano and Roma are best)
- 1/2 cup (85 grams) blanched almonds
- 4 garlic cloves, peeled and roughly chopped
- Handful of basil leaves, torn
- 3 to 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/3 cup (40 grams) dried breadcrumbs, optional (or Parmesan cheese, grated)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Score the underside of the tomatoes with a cross and blanch in a pot of boiling water for about 1 minute. Peel off the skins then chop into quarters. Remove the seeds and then roughly chop the rest of the flesh. Set aside.
- Toast almonds in a moderate oven until golden, about 5 to 10 minutes.
- In a mortar, grind the garlic, basil leaves, and a pinch of salt with a drizzle of olive oil until creamy. Add the almonds and continue grinding until fine and creamy (it will still be slightly grainy or chunky). Add the tomatoes; depending on your preferences, squash them gently or leave them slightly chunky. Add the rest of the olive oil in a drizzle until well combined and creamy. Taste for seasoning, then add salt and pepper if necessary.
- If desired, toast the breadcrumbs in a wide skillet with some olive oil until they're golden and serve this over the pasta in place of Parmesan cheese.
- This recipe is a Community Pick!