Pesto Rosso Rolls

Savory rolls with a homemade red pesto sauce and parmesan cheese filling. Perfect for a savory snack or an appetizer that gives you the best of Mediterranean flavors. Savory rolls with a homemade red pesto sauce and parmesan cheese filling. Perfect for a savory snack or an appetizer that gives you the best of Mediterranean flavors.

Pesto is such a perfect ingredient for comfort food. It makes a great pasta sauce even on its own, it adds rich flavors to home-made pizza and focaccia and is a great option for adding something fresh for any grilled cheese sandwich.

But when you add it to something you bake, that’s my favorite of all the ways you can use pesto to send yourself to foodie heaven. The flavors just melt together and produce a kind of velvety, smooth dreaminess that somehow manages to capture everything that is so great about Mediterranean flavors.

Savory rolls with a homemade red pesto sauce and parmesan cheese filling. Perfect for a savory snack or an appetizer that gives you the best of Mediterranean flavors.

Having made the usual green pesto for years, I wanted to try the red pesto variety – pesto rosso that is made with sundried tomatoes, and I was so glad I did! If you have never tried it, this is the perfect time, and the process could not be any simpler. Just throw the ingredients in a food processor and you have beautiful, fragrant red pesto sauce ready to be used in seconds. So easy to make, endless possibilities for how to use it.

Savory rolls with a homemade red pesto sauce and parmesan cheese filling. Perfect for a savory snack or an appetizer that gives you the best of Mediterranean flavors.

I love the soft nuttiness and crunch that the cashews give and how the garlic is made almost sweet by the heat of the oven. The tomatoes are the star of this delicious red pesto sauce, so use the best you can find. This recipe yields about 1 cup of red pesto so you will have some left over to experiment with later. It will keep for at least a week in the fridge, covered up.

Savory rolls with a homemade red pesto sauce and parmesan cheese filling. Perfect for a savory snack or an appetizer that gives you the best of Mediterranean flavors.

If you are making these for a group of people, you can arrange the red pesto buns in a circle before baking and serve them like that, pull-apart bread style. Perfect with some red wine!

Pesto Rosso Rolls

INGREDIENTS

FOR RED PESTO SAUCE:
handful of basil leaves
1/3 cup grated parmesan or grana padano
4 tablespoons chopped sundried tomatoes in oil
3 garlic cloves
1/3 cup cashews
1/3 cup olive oil
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper

FOR THE ROLLS:
1 cup warm milk
1 egg
1 stick butter
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 package or 2 ¼ teaspoons instant dry yeast
1/3 cup grated parmesan or grana padano

INSTRUCTIONS

1. First, take the egg from the fridge and set aside so it will be room temperature when you make the buns. To make the pesto, put all ingredients in a food processor and pulse until smooth. Add 1-2 tablespoons of oil if the texture seems too thick. Transfer to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
2. To make the buns, mix to combine salt, sugar and flour in a bowl. In another bowl, break the egg and lightly whisk it. Warm up the milk in the microwave and pour in with the egg. Sprinkle the yeast in the liquid and stir to mix it in. Gradually pour in the flour mix and knead until you have an elastic, smooth dough. Put the dough in a bowl, cover with a kitchen towel and let rise in a warm place for 60 minutes.
3. Lightly flour a working surface and put the dough on it. Using a rolling pin, roll out the dough into a rectangular shape, about a half an inch thick. Spread 2/3 cup of red pesto sauce with a spatula evenly on the dough and sprinkle the cheese on top. Tightly roll the dough into a log, starting from the long side.
4. Cut the log into 15-18 pieces, depending on how large you want the buns to be. Place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, arranging them in a round shape so that the seam of each bun is held closed by the bun next to it. Cover with a kitchen towel and let rise for 30 minutes. Heat the oven to 375° F.
5. Bake for 20 minutes on the center rack or until the tops have lightly browned.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.