Incredibly Easy, Delicious & Healthy Penne Pesto
I have to admit that I am just not a Corned Beef & Cabbage type of gal. Never was. Both of my parents love it, and I'm pretty sure my brothers do too. Not sure about my sister. My Mom uses the same recipe that was handed down by her Nana's parents, straight from Ireland. I remember nearly cringing at the taste...the brine I guess. I always just ate the Irish Soda Bread and the potatoes. : /
So on this St. Patty's Day while many were enjoying more traditional dishes I at least got the color right. I had some Basil that I wanted to use up and a half bag of whole wheat penne. I didn't have a full 2 cups of basil so I went half basil, half spinach. Also, I didn't have many pignoli (pine nuts) left...so I went half pignoli, half almonds. And while warming my pesto...just before tossing it with my pasta...I whisked in some plain greek yogurt for some creaminess. Ohhh my! It turned out fantastic! Seriously delicious! Totally on a whim...one of those dig around the fridge and cabinets type of meals...and yet, a keeper of a recipe! If you'd like to give it a try here it is:
You will need:
3 garlic cloves
1/4 cup pine nuts & slivered almonds mixed
1 cup fresh basil leaves
1 cup fresh spinach leaves
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup good quality grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
8 oz of whole wheat penne
1/4 cup plain greek yogurt
First, get your pasta going. Your pesto will be ready before your pasta is ready! It is that fast and easy!
Now, In your food processor or blender, combine the basil, spinach, garlic, and nuts. Pulse until coarsely chopped. Next, add 1/2 of the oil and process until fully incorporated and smooth. Now add the rest of the oil and cheese. Pulse again till smooth.
Now, In a pan or pot large enough to hold everything ( I used the same pot I had boiled my pasta in ) Warm your pesto over low heat for about a minute or so, now whisk in your yogurt. Season with salt and pepper, and toss in your penne! That's it!
Serve topped with a bit more of your grated cheese!
If you give it a try I'd love to hear about it! Pesto isn't for everyone..but geez I love it!