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Linguini with Pistachio Mint Pesto and Tuna



1 1/2 cups shelled natural pistachio nuts

1 large clove garlic

1/4 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes

1 teaspoon coarse sea salt

Extra virgin olive oil

1 1/2 cups packed fresh mint leaves plus extra leaves for garnish

Two 7 ounce jars 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.

This recipe is featured on show 2105 – St. Anthony’s Feast.


  1. Joseph Nizza's avatar

    Joseph Nizza

    Dear Ms Esposito,
    I am a fan of yours and have been watching your TV show for years. When watching your show from Boston during te feast of St. Anthony , I found out that you are as I am Sicilian. I don't know how I missed it in the past. My wife and I are tring to plan a trip to Sicili, soon I hope, may be in the fall. If you can give any advice of we're to go or travel agent or if your show is planning a trip.
    Please let me know, of providetg information if possible.
    Thank you fir all of these recipes.
    Joe Nizza
  2. Carmine Fortunato's avatar

    Carmine Fortunato

    Mary Ann, you are the best. My Mom and I seen you do a cooking demonstration in the Granite Run Mall in Media,PA years ago. You were always my Mom's favorite. My Mom passed this past July and I continue to watch your show every chance I get.
    Your preparation of the foods is authentic Italian and not American Italian which in my opinion isn't Italian food at all. Wishing you the best, stay true to the foods, hope to see you again.
    Ciao, Carmine

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