Today's tip

Pesto has now become a household sauce.

It is easy to make and its freshness of flavor has made it an often-found friend on American tables.

Pesto is classically from Liguria and consists of basil, olive oil, pine nuts, which is great for dressing pasta, but every region has its own version of pesto. Pesto trapanese, made with basil, almonds, and fresh tomatoes, is a quick and easy way to dress pasta. I also enjoy pesto of walnuts and basil.

Pesto is at its best when used immediately after it is made, though it can be refrigerated for up to a few weeks if it’s spooned into a container, topped with olive oil and sealed tight.

Long pasta shapes, like fresh tagliatelle or dried spaghetti or linguini, pair well with pesto. There should be just enough pesto to lightly coat the pasta. If necessary, spoon in a little of the pasta cooking water to help the pasta and pesto glide into a bowl.

To retain its vibrant, fresh flavors, it is important not to cook the pesto, just toss it with the pasta and serve.