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Trofie Pasta al Pesto

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Staffan Terje, Level 1
Staffan Terje
Chef Staffan Terje will teach you how to make this traditional hand-rolled tubular pasta and the authentic basil pesto that accompanies it. With just your hands and a mortar and pestle, you will be able to turn the simple ingredients into an impressive work of culinary art.

Cooking Recipe

For Pasta:
1/2 a medium size bowl or 4 cups fine semolina flour
2 cups water
Pinch of salt

For Pesto:
2 cups fresh basil
1/2 clove garlic
Generous pinch of salt
2 tbsp pine nuts
2 tbsp grated Parmigiano Reggiano
2 tbsp grated Pecorino cheese
5 tbsp olive oil or to taste

Putting the dish together:
1 potato cut into halves then cut into slices
1 & 1/2 handful of green beans cut into thirds
Water for boiling pasta
5 tbsp of ricotta cheese
2 tbsp grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
2 tbsp grated Pecorino cheese

Directions for Pasta:
1. Start off by making the fresh pasta. On a wooden or marble surface pile up 4 cups of fine flour and make a well in the middle with your finger. Add a pinch of salt to the flour then pour about a cup of water in the center of the well and with a fork start mixing the flour into the water. Work the water into the flour gradually with your fork, as it becomes thicker and thicker eventually forming into a dough. Keep adding water little by little until you have the right consistency.

2. Work the dough together by hand kneading until all of the flour is incorporated into a pasta dough ball. Work the dough well to encourage the formation of the gluten within it. Place the dough on a plate, wrap it with plastic wrap and let it sit at room temperature until risen for at least 1 hour, but ideally 3-4 hours.

3. Cut a few strips of the dough from the dough ball and one at a time roll it out by hand on your wood or marble surface into a skinny string, do not add flour. Using a sharp knife cut the dough string into pea sized little dough balls. Once you have the little dough balls from 1-2 strips, roll them out against your work surface with your palms to make the trofie pasta shapes. The trofie should look like little dough tails about 2 inches long. If you moisten your hands with a dab of water you will get better traction to roll out the dough. Repeat with remainder of the dough.

Directions for Pesto:
1. Start by taking the washed and dried basil leaves and tearing them up into pieces by hand. Take 1/2 a clove of garlic, place it in the mortar and pestle with a pinch of salt then grind in the garlic. Add in the basil little by little and keep grinding until you have a paste-like consistency. Add your pine nuts in and grind them fully into the pesto.

2. After grinding the mixture together add in olive oil and stir, then add in Parmigiano Reggiano and Pecorino cheese, stir again and you have your pesto!

Putting together the dish:
1. Fill a pot with water, add salt and bring to a boil. Slice your potatoes thinly and place them in the boiling water first. Boil for 2-3 minutes. Next take the trofie pasta and add them into the pasta water with the potatoes and stir. Cut up some green beans into thirds and add them in the pasta water. Bring pot to a boil, leave for 3-4 minutes to cook stirring occassioanlly.

2. Take the pesto sauce and place it in a bowl, add your ricotta cheese and mix it in lightly. Once the pasta is done, drain it (do not rinse the pasta) nor drain it too completely) and then simply add it to the bowl with the pesto. Do not drain your pasta completely because you don't want your pasta to taste dry. Fold all the ingredients together and you're ready to plate.

3. Finish with flurry of Pecorino and Parmigiano Reggiano cheese. Serve hot.


Check out the other videos in the Italian Summer Dinner Party menu:
Main Course:

Trofie Pasta al Pesto


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