Lidia Bastianich’s Tagliatelle with Walnut Pesto

Serves: 6

First, I used rigatoni here and I am really glad I did.

Secondly, I almost did not type it.

Initially at least, as a main, it was a bit overwhelming.

All those walnuts. Lovely, though unusual and together with the ricotta and the Parmesan and the butter, quite something.

Indeed, we both agreed lovely, though maybe as a starter.

The next day though, I took a box to work with some sprinkled Parmesan and wow. What a lunch.

Not a low-cal lunch by any stretch, though what a bloody treat. I couldn’t get enough.

And then Nat messaged me and whilst she had a mush smaller serve, also agreed that it was just bloody wonderful.

So do it with rigatoni. And let it sit in the fridge for a day.

Because as with every Lidia Bastianich recipe, you’re onto a winner. Even if it does take one more day to fully get there.


2 cups walnut halves or pieces, toasted
2 plump garlic cloves, peeled
1 1/2 c ricotta
6 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
6 tbsp grated Parmesan plus extra for serving
3 tbsp chopped fresh Italian parsley
1 tsp salt
Freshly ground black pepper to taste

For the pasta

1 batch tagliatelle (use 500gm rigatoni)
3 tbsp soft butter


  1. Heat the water to a boil ready for the pasta.
  2. Put the walnuts and garlic in a food processor and pulse until the nuts are chopped into very tiny bits, though not a powder. Scrape the nut-garlic mixture into a bowl and stir in the ricotta, olive oil, Parmesan, parsley, salt and pepper, until thoroughly blended.
  3. Cook the pasta and when cooked, working quickly, and add to the walnut pesto. Drop the soft butter into the mixture, stirring to combine.
  4. Serve immediately in warm bowls, with more grated Parmesan at the table.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s