Okay, there are only four true herbs here — but we count the celery leaves as a fifth because they are so delicate and full of green herbal nuances. This pesto has a looser look and feel, and likewise dances differently on the palate, than traditional pulverized pestos. The herbs are chopped, which keeps the flavors bright and allows them to stay distinct even as they mingle.
Spaghetti with Five-Herb Pesto
Pasta with pesto is a great meatless dinner option, but you can also top this dish with crisp pancetta cubes or chewy ribbons of prosciutto.
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
1 cup (1 oz./30 g.) lightly packed fresh basil leaves
1 cup (1 oz./30 g.) lightly packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
2 Tbs. lightly packed fresh tarragon leaves
2 Tbs. lightly packed fresh sage leaves
1/2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
1 clove garlic, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup (2 oz./60 g.) freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup (2 1/2 oz. 75 g.) pine nuts, lightly toasted
1/2 cup (4 fl. oz./125 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
1 lb. (500 g.) spaghetti
1/2 cup (1/2 oz./15 g.) lightly packed celery leaves
Bring a large pot three-fourths full of lightly salted water to a boil over medium-high heat.
Finely chop the basil, parsley, tarragon and sage and place in a bowl. Sprinkle in the lemon juice and stir to coat the herbs with the juice.
Combine the garlic, Parmesan and pine nuts in a blender or food processor. With the machine running, add the olive oil in a slow, steady stream and process until the mixture is creamy and blended. Pour the oil mixture into the bowl with the herbs and stir to combine.
Add the spaghetti to the boiling water and cook, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking, until the pasta is al dente, 10 to 12 minutes or according to package directions. Drain the pasta and transfer to a serving bowl. Toss with the pesto, add a pinch or two of salt and a few grinds of pepper. Top with the celery leaves and serve right away. Serves 4 to 6.