Corzetti Pasta With Pesto

Pesto with the pasta shape corzetti

Hailing from Genoa in northern Italy (which also happens to be the birthplace of pesto), it's no great surprise that corzetti pasta and pesto make for a pair of well-suited bedfellows.

Sometimes called croxetti, the hallmark of this pasta is, quite literally, a hallmark that is embossed into the circular dough, traditionally with a handmade stamp. As well as looking pretty, the stamp increases the surface area of the pasta, which enables sauces to stick to it much better than if the surface were completely flat.

Corzetti pasta shapes

Different regions have their own interpretation of what corzetti pasta should look like. For some, the pasta is a figure of eight shape. Others consider it to be more of a concave disk, very similar to orecchiette. For us, though, the quintessential shape of corzetti is a flat disk, which resembles a coin more than pasta. That makes much more sense, since the name is derived from corzetto, a type of 14th century Genovese coin.

This pasta is essentially the culinary equivalent of a wax sealing stamp, a way for the great and the good to show their dinner guests that they were affluent enough to have their coat of arms literally etched into their food.


Pro tip
For complete authenticity, follow the one and only recipe endorsed by the Pesto Genovese Consortium.

Ingredients for two

Corzetti pasta 150g
Pesto 100g
Parmesan as needed

Cook your pasta according to the pack instructions in well salted water until perfectly al dente.

Drain the pasta, reserving a tablespoon or two of the cooking water.

Fold the pesto through the pasta, add a little of the starchy pasta water, and stir until fully emulsified.

Enjoy with lashings of Parmesan.