Trofie con Salsa di Erbe e Noci (Pasta twists with a Herb and Nut Sauce)



Now that the weather is warming up I am putting together my ever increasing list of favourite pasta dishes to turn to when I want something light. Here is a wonderful Ligurian recipe from Antonio Carluccio which is high up on my list. It is just so fresh and delicious, incorporating fresh oregano, rosemary, sage and of course, basil. Given that I have these herbs in the garden and a store of walnuts always to be found in my pantry, this dish just ticks all my boxes. 

I like to serve a nutty Semillion with this – something like the 2013 Aravina Estate Semillion from Margaret River but a  youthful Chardonnay would also be perfect.


Trofie con Salsa di Erbe e Noci

300g trofie pasta (or trenette)

salt and freshly ground black pepper


150g shelled walnuts

1/2 tablespoon each of fresh oregano, rosemary and sage

a few basil leaves, sliced

10g coarse sea salt

2 garlic cloves, peeled

6 tablespoons olive oil

80g pecorino cheese, fresehly grated


Cook the pasta in plenty of boiling salted water for about 12-14 minutes, or until al dente. (If you are using fresh pasta, it will only take 4-5 minutes).

Meanwhile. to make the sauce, in a pestle and mortar, crush the walnuts with the herbs, salt and garlic to obtain a creamy consistency. Add the oil, and 60g of the pecorino and blend.

Drain the pasta, saving a couple of tablespoons of the cooking water, and put them in the sauce. The sauce just needs heating up, not cooking, with the addition of the pasta cooking water. Sprinkle with the remaining pecorino and any remaining basil leaves.



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