So this recipe is an amalgamation of a couple different things. I went to a small local business event once during my time in law school, that was a potluck event. One woman brought her pesto, which included sun-dried tomatoes from a jar and I loved the flavor and color they added to a pesto. Regular pesto sauce is made with pine nuts and a lot of basil. For me, those pesto sauces always seemed heavy, and more appropriate for fall or winter. But I loved the fresh green appearance of pesto, and the intense flavor. So the recipe below is a result of researching a lot of other pesto recipes, and combining some flavors I enjoyed from others.
1 cup raw almonds
2 cups baby spinach
3 oz garlic infused olive oil, 3 oz basil infused olive oil (can substitute 3/4 cup regular extra virgin olive oil and add three cloves garlic pressed)
2 cups fresh basil
1 jar sundried tomatoes (I prefer to buy them julienne cut so they are easier to toss in the pesto)
1 lb. Pasta of your choice (I like using Rotini noodles for pesto the best)
Asiago cheese or Romano cheese to grate for serving
Salt/pepper to taste
(1) Put almonds in a food processor first and pulse until you reach a paste-like consistency
(2) add olive oil and pulse a few times
(3) Add spinach and basil and process until thoroughly mixed
(4) Cook pasta to desired doneness, and drain.
(5) toss pesto with noodles and mix until thoroughly coating noodles
(6) Remove sundried tomatoes from jar, cut into smaller pieces (if not using julienne cut) removed from oil;
(7) add pieces of sun dried tomato throughout pasta and mix
(8) add fresh grated romano cheese or asiago cheese, salt/pepper to taste for each serving.