penne regate with garden fresh parsley pesto and tomato sauce

August 13, 2013 § 56 Comments


We all have a “go to” dish we have perfected to our liking over time and repetition.  Perhaps if you have been checking in with this blog you would guess mine would involve pasta.  Cottage Grove House is still very new and there is already sixteen pasta recipes posted.  Today’s recipe is my “go to” pasta sauce.  When it seems as though there is nothing to eat or prepare in the kitchen I always find some parsley in the crisper (or in this occasion the garden) and a large can of tomatoes in the pantry, perfect to make both pesto and tomato sauce pasta.


Our parsley plant needed a trim so I decided to make a pesto for lunch.  I discovered cutting parsley off the plant and promptly using it certainly intensifies the flavor of the pesto.  The freshly cut parsley really gave a distinctive flavor to the sauce, as though the herb was still very much alive.  For no particular reason I chose to leave out any type of nut for this pesto.   And using penne regate pasta was a very good idea seeing that the sauce found it way deep into the hollow center, as well as holding to the exterior ridges.

I n g r e d i e n t s

  • 1 pound of good quality penne regate

tomato sauce

  • 2 cups whole, peeled, canned San Marzano (if possible) plum tomatoes, with their juices (one 28-oz. can)
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed


  • handful fresh parsley (about 1 cup once it is finely chopped)
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • salt (about 1/2 teaspoon)


m e t h o d

Put a large pot of water on the stove over high heat and bring to a boil.  In the meantime, heat 1/4 cup of olive oil in a saucepan over medium high heat.  Add the crushed garlic and cook until aromatic.  Carefully add the tomatoes, and break them up with the back of a wooden spoon.  Bring to a gentle boil, turn heat to lowest setting and simmer, stirring occasionally.

Put the parsley, parmesan, garlic, and salt in a food processor and pulse for a few seconds to combine.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl, then pulse again.  Drizzle in the olive oil while the machine is running just long enough to incorporate the oil.  Set aside while waiting for the pasta to cook.

Once your water is at a roaring boil add a tablespoon of coarse grain salt and drop your pasta in.  Cook until al dente, penne regate cooking time is approximately 9 minutes.  Drain the penne and return to the pot.  Toss with the pesto sauce until well coated,  then pour in the tomato sauce and continue to gently toss until well combined.

Serves 4.


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