Caprese Pesto Pasta Salad

Caprese Pesto Pasta Salad


2 cups packed fresh basil leaves
1 lb dry penne or fusilli pasta
⅔ cup extra virgin olive oil, plus some for sprinkling
½ cup white balsamic vinegar
1 shallot, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 tsp. salt, plus more to taste
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
8 oz small fresh mozzarella balls, halved
1 cherry grape tomatoes, halved



In a large heavy pot, bring well-salted water to a boil. Cook pasta according to instructions.
Drain fully but do not rinse. Transfer to a large serving bowl and sprinkle with a bit of olive oil, tossing so pasta is thinly coated.
In a food processor, combine the basil, olive oil, vinegar, shallot, garlic, salt, pepper. Pulse until finely chopped.
Pour dressing over pasta and toss until evenly coated. Add more salt and fresh black pepper to taste.
When ready to serve, toss in the mozzarella halves and tomato halves. Combine well.

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