Dinner/ Italian recipes/ Lunch/ Pasta/ Pork/ Quick & Easy/ Vegetarian

Easy Pasta Pesto with Charred Cherry Tomatoes and Pork Meatballs

27 March 2021

Surprisingly easy, super quick and soooo tasty. This is a great lazy, weekday or weekend dish full of flavour and made within 20 minutes! 

I had a whole bunch of parsley and a wilting basil plant which I needed to use up, the easiest is to make it into herb oil. Just add the herbs into a food processor (stems and all), add a pinch of salt and pepper, a tablespoon of cold water, a good glug of olive oil and blend until smooth until desired consistency. If you’re in a real hurry, just skip this step and use store bought pesto (preferably the fresh kind).

Now you have a super versatile base for different sauces and uses. For pesto blend in parmesan, toasted pine nuts, a garlic clove and lemon zest. Or mix it through yoghurt with some lemon juice for a lovely vegetable dipping sauce. Use it as a topping for soup or on a sandwich, or maybe even to fill a trout before oven roasting it. Loads of options!

Easy Pasta Pesto with Charred Cherry Tomatoes and Pork Meatballs

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Dinner, lunch, pasta Italian
By Saffron Serves: 2
Prep Time: 5 minutes Cooking Time: 15 minutes Total Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients

  • ± 250 g cherry tomatoes
  • 1-2 onions, peeled and quartered, taken apart a bit
  • ± 150 g (whole wheat) spaghetti
  • 2 pork (fennel) sausages (leave out for vegetarian option)
  • ± 1 cup pesto (fresh store bought or fresh homemade)
  • Olive oil
  • Pepper & Salt

Instructions

1

Turn on the grill in the oven.

2

Coat cherry tomatoes and quartered onions with olive oil and pepper and salt and spread out on a lined baking tray.

3

Set aside until 5 minutes before serving.

4

Boil well salted water for pasta and cook the pasta for 9 minutes (or according to packet). In the meantime continue with the rest.

5

Remove the casing of 2 pork sausages and roll the filling into 6 meatballs per sausage.

6

Heat a drop of olive oil in a frying pan and add the meatballs, searing on all sides. Fry until just before serving, ± 7 minutes.

7

Place the tomatoes and onions in the oven, grill for ± 5 minutes until charred and caramelized.

8

Drain the pasta but set aside ± 2 cups pasta water.

9

Add the pesto to the pasta in the pan, mix well and slowly add some pasta water, a drop at a time, until sauce has required consistency. (You probably won't need all the pasta water)

10

And now you're ready to serve!

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