1 pound penne pasta (you can use brown rice gluten free pasta if you want)
3 cups of basil, washed and dried
1 cup of pine nuts
1 cup of shredded parmesan
2 cloves of garlic (or 2 cubes frozen garlic)
1 ¼ teaspoon + 1 tablespoon of salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
½ cup of pasta water (this will be water that you reserve when you cook the pasta)
Take your basil and pine nuts and place them in a food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Turn the machine on for 30 seconds then shut it off and add the cheese, garlic, 1 ¼ teaspoon of salt and pepper. Run the machine again for another 30 seconds. With the machine running, slowly drizzle in the olive oil until it is all incorporated.
Fill a large pot ¾ of the way with cold water. Cover the pot and put on a medium-high flame. When the water boils, add 1 tablespoon of salt and your pasta to the pot. Cook your pasta al dente for 8-9 minutes. (Gluten free may require more time) Ladle ½ cup of pasta water to the side to use later when tossing the pasta with the pesto. When the pasta is ready, drain into a colander. Do not rinse the pasta, just put it right into your serving bowl.
The pesto sauce can be made and frozen up to 2 months in advance. To freeze put in a plastic container and place plastic wrap directly over the surface. Then close the container. Defrost it in the fridge the day you plan to use it. It only needs to thaw for a few hours.
The pasta should be made and tossed prior to serving.