whole wheat angel hair with basil pecan pesto

1 Dec

it is really embarassing how much i post about pasta dishes. pastaholics unanonymous right here. it’s truly a love-hate relationship.

i often hear friends and family use “healthy” and “low calorie” or “dietetic” interchangeably. Although it’s a safe bet that most healthful foods are not super calorie dense, healthful does not translate to low cal and low cal foods are certainly not always healthy. That being said, this is NOT a low calorie dish, however, it is healthy as it contains whole grains, good fats, protein, and fiber. (and it’s bomb.com/flavortown)

traditional pesto is made with fresh basil, extra virgin olive oil, pine nuts, and parmigiano cheese. (in that order in terms of quantity) I didn’t have pine nuts so I used toasted pecans because it was all I had, and moving my tush to the store is rarely an option by 7:30 pm. I also added some spinach into my pesto both for color and for an extra boost of veggie super powers, and ultimately, because it allows me to justify the pasta in general.

I got beautiful local Texas spinach 🙂 farm to table spinach is a totally different [better] breed of vegetable both in taste and in appearance.

Whatcha Need for 2 Servings…or for one ME size portion:
8-15 basil leaves, washed and DRIED
about 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves, smashed
1/8 cup parmigiano reggiano cheese (more if desired)
whole wheat linguine, angel hair, or spaghetti
1/4 cup pine nuts, pecans, walnuts, whaaateva kinda nuts ya got (except peanuts…just trust me on this one)

put a pot of water up to boil.
wash the basil leaves, pat dry dry dry.

toast your nuts. in a dry saute pan over medium heat, flipping frequently for about three minutes.
Smash your garlic cloves.
Combine basil, garlic, nuts, parmesan cheese, a handful of spinach, half the olive oil, a pinch of salt and pepper in the blender. If it doesn’t blend that means you don’t have enough oil in. once its moving in the blender, stream in a bit of olive oil so it thickens and emulsifies. 

Put the pasta into the SALTED boiling water. You know you’ve missed your salty friend, admit it, embrace it, and move along.
In the last minute of cooking the pasta, add in a handful of spinach and remove 1/3 cup of pasta water and set aside.
Strain the pasta. While the pasta and spinach are in the strainer, pour a dollop of the pesto into the hot pasta pot. 
Add the pasta back to the pot and mix. Add more pesto as desired/necessary (pesto is very necessary). If the pasta appears very thick add a few drops of pasta water at a time until the desired sauciness is reached. After all, you are your own sauuuce bosss. Adjust salt and pepps as needed.


One Response to “whole wheat angel hair with basil pecan pesto”

  1. Liss December 9, 2011 at 1:09 am #

    this looks amazing. please make it for me immediately 🙂

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