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Anari and Sundried Tomatoes Pesto


Using my own sundried tomatoes that are full of Umami flavour has further elevated the taste of the sauce. Of course, always in combination with the crunchiness of the courgettes and the crispiness of the walnuts.



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Anari and Sundried Tomatoes Pesto

Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: Cypriot
Servings: 5


  • 500 g Penne Pasta
  • 100 ml EVOO , extra virgin olive oil
  • 175 g Anari Salted , Charalambides Christis
  • 1 Halloumi , Pissourkotiko Traditional Goat & Sheep, Charalambides Christis, for grating
  • 20 Sundried Tomatoes , strained from their oil
  • 3 small-medium Courgettes , quartered lengthwise and then finely diced 3-4 mm
  • 2 cloves Garlic , whole and smashed
  • 22 Walnuts , 6 to be crushed and used for garnishing
  • 75 ml Chicken Broth
  • 1 tsp Sea Salt
  • ½ tsp freshly ground Black Pepper
  • 4 litres Water


  • Place a large, deep sauté pan over medium heat and add 40ml of the olive oil along with the garlic. Sauté until fragrant, increase the heat, wait for a minute to really heat up and add the cut courgettes. Season with ½ tsp of sea salt and ¼ tsp of pepper, sauté for 3-4’, discard the garlic and remove from fire as you want the courgette to remain crispy. Remove from the pan to a dish with kitchen paper to absorb the extra oil and keep aside.
  • Put the sundried tomatoes in the bowl of a food processor with the metal blade attached along with 60ml of olive oil and add the anari cheese, the 15 whole walnuts and season with the remaining salt and pepper. Pulse and process until smooth while slowly adding the chicken broth for the desired consistency and thickness of the sauce, not runny but also not as a paste. Keep aside.
  • In the meantime, in a large pot bring water to a boil on high heat, adding a generous amount of salt. Add the pasta, stirring occasionally so as not to stick and cook 1’ less than package instructions. Reserve ½ cup of cooking water.
  • Return the pesto sauce to the sauté pan that the courgettes were sautéed and keep on low heat, waiting for the pasta to be cooked.
  • Strain the pasta and return to the pan with the pesto. Toss the pasta along with the pesto sauce for a minute so as the sauce goes to every single piece of the pasta. Add the courgettes and toss gently. Serve and top with the crushed walnuts and finally grate the halloumi on top.


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