Trofie alla Genovese

Vegan recipe

You know it. You love it. You want to eat it. Pesto is one of the most famous Italian pasta sauces—and for good reason: The smooth and silky consistency of the extra virgin olive oil and the refreshing taste of the basil make this simple sauce a culinary piece of heaven, every single time.

But have you already heard of “Trofie alla Genovese”? If not, it’s high time to try it out! It’s a traditional pasta type called trofie served with pesto sauce, potatoes and runner beans.

Ingredients for 4 people:

  • 300 grams of semolina
  • 200 grams of potatoes
  • 200 grams of runner beans
  • 80 grams of basil
  • 1 big clove of garlic
  • 30 grams of pine nuts
  • Coarse sea salt
  • 1,5 dl of extra virgin olive oil
Vegan recipe
Created by author
Put the semolina into a large bowl and make a trough in the middle. Add 150ml of water and a tablespoon of olive oil. Now mix everything together and knead your dough for ten minutes. Wrap it in some cling film and let it rest for an hour. Meanwhile wash the basil briskly under some cold water—don’t soak it otherwise it will lose its taste! Dry it carefully with a paper towel and take the leaves off the stalk. Make sure you use fresh and seasonal basil because the result of a simple sauce like this stands or falls with the quality of its ingredients.
Trofie alla Genovese
Created by author
Trofie alla Genovese
Created by author
Trofie alla Genovese
Created by author

Put some grains of sea salt and the garlic clove into a mortar and start to grind steadily. Then add the pine nuts and afterwards the basil and continue to grind until you have a beautiful creamy consistency. At the very end add the extra virgin olive oil. You can also make some more for a later date if you want: Just fill the rest of your pesto into a jar, cover the top with olive oil, close it well and put it in the fridge. You can keep it like this for up to one to two weeks.

Now the best part: Take a tiny bit of your dough (about a fingertip) and put it on the wooden board in front of you. Move your hand forwards over the dough to roll it, then pull your hand back in a slight vertical angle. The dough roll should curl up a little behind the edge of your hand and form a twisted shape. It helps if your hands are a tiny bit wet and your working surface isn’t too smooth. This needs some practice at first but don’t give up. It won’t take long and you will be able to make trofie like an Italian nonna.

Trofie alla Genovese
Created by author

When the trofie are ready, heat up a big pot of water. Meanwhile wash the runner beans and thread them. Peel the potatoes and cut them into tiny square pieces. Once the water is boiling add plenty of salt to it—it should taste like sea water. First put the potatoes in the water, after two minutes you can add the runner beans and your trofie and cook it all together for another five minutes. Remember that the cooking time of your trofie depends on their thickness. If it is the first time that you’re making them, you might want to test the cooking time with one of the trofie and adjust the timing accordingly.

Before you drain all the cooking water, take two tablespoons of it out and put it aside. Now you can mix everything together with the pesto and the leftover cooking water. Buon appetito!

Vegan recipe
Created by author
              

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After her degree in journalism and communication she collected various work experience writing for newspapers and magazines, working at a media office and a digital marketing agency. On the side she seized every opportunity to travel the world and learn new languages. This was necessary coming from a small town in Switzerland as hardly anyone would have understood her on those travels through Latin America, Northern Africa, Asia and Australia. When she's at home she spends most of her time in the kitchen baking different types of bread or cooking luscious pasta dishes–living out her Italian roots.