Linguine with Pistachio Mint Pesto and Tuna
- 1 ½ cups shelled natural pistachio nuts
- 1 large clove garlic
- ¼ teaspoon hot red pepper flakes
- 1 teaspoon coarse sea salt
- Extra virgin olive oil
- 1 ½ cups packed fresh mint leaves plus extra leaves for garnish
- 7 Twoounce jar of Calipo brand Tuna in Olive Oil, drained and chunked
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, cut in half
- 3 tablespoons capers in salt, well rinsed
- Coarse ground black pepper
- 1 pound linguinE
- Toast the nuts in a dry non- stick skillet over medium heat until they are fragrant. Transfer one cup of the nuts to a food processor along with the garlic, pepper flakes and salt. Reserve the remaining nuts.
- Pulse the mixture until it is somewhat smooth but still a little chunky. Add the mint leaves.
- With the motor running add ½ cup of olive oil and process until the mixture is a thick sauce consistency. Add oil as needed. Transfer to a bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste and set aside.
- Cook the linguine in 4 quarts of rapidly boiling salted water until the pasta is al dente. Scoop out 1/3 cup of the cooking water with a ladle and add it to the bowl with the pesto and smooth the sauce.
- Combine the linguine with the sauce, tossing well. Add the tomatoes, capers and a good grinding of black pepper. Transfer to a platter. Sprinkle the remaining nuts over the top and garnish with the mint leaves.
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