This is one for the festive season. It’s simple and easy to whip up for a quick lunch – fabulous hot or cold, and a wonderful, fresh addition to a beach picnic. There’s not much cooking here, apart from the pasta, then a quick chop of fresh tomato, basil, a good grating of parmesan and, to finish it off, a generous squeeze of lemon.


Serves 2-4

• ½ bag pasta (whatever your preference)

• 3 ripe tomatoes, roughly chopped – cherry tomatoes cut in half work well here too.

• ½ cup of store-bought basil pesto

• 1 Tbsp olive oil

• ½ cup fresh basil leaves, roughly torn

• ½ cup parmesan

• ½ lemon – squeezed

• ½ chilli, chopped (optional)

• Salt and pepper to taste


1 Cook the pasta until al dente. Drain.

2 Add the olive oil.

3 Add the basil pesto and mix through.

4 Taste and season with salt and pepper.

5 Add the fresh tomatoes, basil, parmesan, chilli, and gently mix.

6 Squeeze on the lemon juice.

7 Gently toss and eat!