Tagliatelle fall into the family of what is known as “cutters” (in Italian, “tagliare” means “to cut”), which is a group of pasta that are long and ribbon-like. Other members of the “cutters” family include tagliolini, pappardelle, and fettuccine. Tagliatelle hail from the Emilia-Romagna and Marche regions of Italy, where they are fiercely adored. Legend states that tagliatelle were invented on the night of Annibale II Bentivoglio’s wedding to Lucrezia from the house of Este in 1487, by Lucrezia’s talented chef, after seeing her ribbon-like hairstyle. However, there is much speculation about whether this is actually true or a joke made up by humourist Augusto Majani in 1931. We will never know.
Made with a flour blend that does not contain gluten, our fresh, homemade gluten free tagliatelle is a world away from its store-bought equivalent, and is the perfect accompaniment to our classic basil pesto, or pesto alla Genovese, as it is traditionally referred to. Made very simply using a pestle and mortar with just a few ingredients, this classic sauce, native to Liguria, is most delicious at its freshest, allowing key flavours like basil, garlic and Parmigiano Reggiano, to shine. You can also follow along as our chef Roberta makes basil pesto in the video below.
Gluten free tagliatelle with pesto alla Genovese recipe
Serves: 2-3 people
Prep Time: 65 minutes
Cooking Time: 10 minutes
Calories per serving: 637 kcal
For your gluten free tagliatelle
For all you need to make fresh, gluten free tagliatelle, see our recipe here.
For your pesto alla Genovese
- 3 cups basil, cleaned and chopped
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- ⅓ cup Parmigiano Reggiano, grated
- 30g pine nuts
- 1 small clove garlic, minced
- Salt to taste
- Rolling pin
- Wooden board
- Pasta cutter or knife
- Pestle and mortar
Chef’s tip: If you don’t have a pestle and mortar at home, simply use a food processor instead. We like our pesto to have a slightly rustic texture, so be sure not to over grind.
- Prepare your gluten free pasta dough, following our simple fresh tagliatelle recipe.
- While your dough rests, prepare your fresh basil pesto. Start by gently toasting the pine nuts in a dry frying pan over medium heat until they turn a light golden brown colour. Keep the pine nuts moving constantly, to ensure they don’t burn. Remove any darker brown pine nuts from the mix before adding to the basil, as they will impart a burnt flavour to the pesto.
- Put the pine nuts and minced garlic clove into a pestle and mortar and grind until creamy. This may take some time, but persevere - we want the raw garlic to form a smooth paste. Once smooth, remove from the pestle and mortar, and set to one side.
- Add the fresh basil to the mortar, as well as a pinch of salt - this will not only add flavour, but will allow you to break down the basil leaves into a paste. Grind the ingredients together in a circular motion until this is achieved.
- Add the garlic and pine nut mixture back to the mortar, and grind until combined. Immediately, you should see the colour of the mixture change from a deep green colour, to a lighter, more vibrant hue.
- Drizzle the olive oil into the mortar, and add the freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano. Continue to grind the mixture until a creamy yet slightly rugged paste is formed. We recommend leaving it a little rustic as this will help the pesto adhere to the pasta.
- Once complete, set your pesto to one side. By this point, your gluten free dough should be well-rested, and ready for shaping. Create your strands of fresh, gluten free tagliatelle by following the rest of our comprehensive guide.
- Bring a large pot of generously salted water to a boil. Add the tagliatelle and cook for 2-3 minutes, or until al dente (taste a piece before removing from the water).
- Strain the pasta, reserving a small amount of the cooking water. Mix this water with your fresh basil pesto, to loosen the mixture slightly (this will help the pesto adhere to the sauce).
- Add the pesto to the pan containing the strained pasta, and toss to combine. Plate and serve with some more freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano. Buon appetito.
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