Recipe: Delicious Pasta alla Trapanese!

When you think of pesto, you cannot deny that a dark green sauce with pine nuts comes to mind, right? Think again, carusi!

This type of pesto and pasta is protected by the Italian government as a traditional, unique product of origin – this is called, Busiate al Pesto Trapenese.

Of course, the star of the show is the pesto paste itself, but it is infamous for being paired with a type of Sicilian pasta – called Busiate.

Busiate (cork screw-shaped pasta)-Sicilia | Living a Life in Colour

And this is the beauty that is Sicilian cuisine. One finds that many dishes have been influenced from the presence of all the inhabitants over the centuries. In fact, the busiate is a piece of history from the Arab settlements in Sicily. But it is thanks to Italy’s maritime history, Ligurian sailors from Genova would arrive at the port of Trapani after their travels through Eastern Asia and bring their pesto recipe.

Hence, it wasn’t soon after that the original Genovese pesto would quickly transform to today’s iconic, Sicilian dish. And who can blame the Sicilians who could not help themselves to reproduce this rich, creamy dish! Just add fresh tomatoes and swap pine nuts for blanched almonds and eccolo – a Sicilian favourite!

Busiate al Pesto Trapanese - Pasta

Unfortunately, it is hard to find this dish (or at least cooked correctly) at your local Italian restaurant. Thankfully, we provide you the secret to this Sicilian recipe below:

Busiate al Pesto Trapanese


  • 40g almonds – blanched
  • 2 vine tomatoes
  • ½ garlic clove
  • 40g grated pecorino
  • 3 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1 handful of basil leaves
  • I handful of mint leaves (optional)
  • Fresh lemon juice
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Salt


  • Mortar and pestle or more commonly, a food processor/blender


  1. Toast the almonds in a hot pan until golden and shiny. Don’t add oil. To prevent burning, make sure to stir the almonds regularly.
  2. Once cooked, add to the mortar with the rest of the ingredients above apart from the lemon juice and pepper.
  3. Pestle or blend until you reach a consistency you desire. That is, either rough and chunky or a smooth paste.
  4. Taste as you go and add lemon, pepper and some salt!

    The pesto will stay fresh for no more than three days! Serve it immediately with your favourite pasta for best results!

Bon appetitu carusi

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