This is a perfect recipe for those days when you need something quick and easy. You will notice on my photo that I have loads of black olives and mozzarella, my daughters love them and would happily pick them out of the bowl as soon as my back is turned. In fact this evening I looked up at Georgina just as she stabbed four mozzarella balls onto her fork and stuffed them in her mouth hoping I hadn’t seen.
I have to say though, I love the bold colours of this pasta salad. I find it really cheerful and pesto pasta is one of our all time favorites, the girls have loved pesto from an early age. It has been a go to for me on many occasion when I have been pushed for time or I have needed to plate something up which I knew would be eaten with the minimal amount of fuss. All in all it only takes 15 minutes to pull this together, the longest part being cooking up the pasta. while you blitz the pesto. Harriet selected the smallest basil leaves she could find to add the finishing touch.
- 250g Dry Pasta shapes
- 1/2 Tbsp Extra-virgin olive oil
- 150g Cherry tomatoes
- 200g Fresh mozzarella balls
- 1 Jar Black olives – without the stone
- 1 Tbsp Pine nuts
- Fresh Basil
For the Pesto
- 50 grams fresh basil leaves
- 2 tablespoons freshly grated parmesan cheese
- 1/2 clove garlic
- a big pinch of sea salt
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- Cook the pasta as per the instructions per the packet.
- While the pasta is cooking, place the all pesto ingredients apart from the olive oil into a food processor and blitz. Slowly add the olive oil to get the consistency you prefer, I like mine a bit course. If it is still too thick after the 3 tablespoons of oil you can thin it out with either a little of the pasta water or use a little more olive oil.
- Drain the cooked pasta and rinse it under cold running water to cool stop the cooking process and toss with half a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil. Set aside.
- When the pasta is cold, stir in the pesto to give an even coating.
- Add the olives, cherry tomatoes and mozzerella and pine nuts, garnish with basil leaves.