Mezzaluna de Zucchini al Pesto – an authentic Italian pastry recipe

This “Half moons with zucchini and fresh pesto” recipe has been shared by our Tuscan chefs from their gourmet cookery school in the heart of the Italy, so there’s no better place to find an authentic recipe for a dish containing pastries and pesto.

Once you’ve mastered this Italian recipe (or even if you haven’t), you can join the chefs for a gourmet cookery holiday in gorgeous Tuscany, Italy to improve your skills.

pesto pastry recipe

Serves: 4



• 250 g flour
• 125 g water
• 40 g butter


• 300 g zucchini
• 100 g grated parmesean
• 8 tbs olive oil
• 3 gloves of garlic
• bunch of thyme
• 3 pinches of salt


• 4 bunches of fresh basil
• 1 clove of garlic
• 4 T of parmesan cheese
• 1 T of pecorino cheese
• 2 T pine nuts
• 1 cup of olive oil
• 2 pinches salt
• 1 pinch of white pepper

Let’s get cooking!

1. For the pastry, mix all of the ingredients together straightaway.

2. Then, knead the dough with your hands, working it the same way you’d work fresh pasta, until you have a smooth and soft ball.

3. Leave the ball of dough to set under a hot saucepan for 30 minutes.

4. After it has rested, enlarge the pastry with your hands, before rolling it out evenly on top of a clean tea towel.

5. While the dough rests, wash and cut the zucchini. Sautè it in olive oil with 3 pinches of salt, garlic (crushed with the back of a knife) and thyme for about 10 minutes on a medium flame (not covered).

6. Let the zucchini mixture cool.

7. Remove the leaves of basil from the stems and put in the blender together with the other pesto ingredients, but leaving the oil until the end. Mix on low speed for 3 seconds.

8. Then, put the pesto in a bowl and stir with a wooden spoon. Add more salt and pepper to taste as needed.

9. To pull it all together, take the pastry and arrange it flatly on a surface. Then place the grated zucchini mixture inside the dough, with the pesto then going on top of the zucchini mix.

10. Carefully begin rolling the pastry and the mixture into a tube shape. Once this has been done, you can then bend gently into a ‘Mezzaluna’ (half moon) shape.

11. Whisk the egg yolk and then brush lightly over the dough.

12. Finally, place the half moon in the oven for 25 minutes at 160 degrees Celsius. Serve hot.

More about cooking in Italy…

Interested in joining these professional Italian chefs on an immersive cooking holiday? Find out more about their Gourmet Tuscan Cookery Holiday and indulge your inner food lover.