Pesto (the best I’ve made yet) Pasta (V)

This gorgeous pesto pasta dish is tasty, fresh and a great Vegetarian option that is filling too. I have made pesto a few times and it’s always been enjoyable, but with the extra cheese I think this was the best most tastiest I have made yet! All you need are the below ingredients, seasoning + oil, a blender and your usual kitchen utensils and you’re good to go! The roast tomatoes are a great addition to the dish giving this meal a juicy, sweetness. Total calories = Approx. 650 calories per portion.

Ingredients (for 2 people);

  • 160g tenderstem broccoli
  • 1 vegetable stock cube
  • 30g pine nut & seed mix (pumpkin & sunflower seeds)
  • 40g Italian hard cheese
  • 50g soft cheese
  • 200g pasta (I used farfalle)
  • 20g basil
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice

Method (Takes approx. 25 mins including prep);

  1. Preheat the oven to 220°C/ 200°C (fan)/ gas mark 7. Add the pine nut & seed mix to a large pan over a medium heat and cook for 2-3 min, stirring occasionally, until nicely toasted. Once done, transfer the toasted seeds to a food processor (reserve the pan)
  2. While the pine nuts & seeds are toasting, chop the tomatoes into wedges and add them to a baking tray with a drizzle of olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper. Put the tray in the oven for 20 mins or until softened.
  3. Add the pasta to a different pan of boiled water with a pinch of salt and bring to the boil over a high heat. Cook the pasta for an initial 9 mins then add in the tenderstem broccoli (chop any extra long stalks in half) for a further 3 – 4 mins until cooked through/tender.
  4. Meanwhile, grate the Italian hard cheese (save a pinch to one side for garnish), peel the garlic and add to the food processor with the basil, 1 tbsp olive oil, 2 tbsp cold water, the vegetable stock cube, soft cheese and 2 tbsp of lemon juice. Blitz until well combined and smooth – this is your extra creamy pesto.
  5. Once cooked, drain the pasta and broccoli, then return them to the pot with the creamy pesto. Give everything a good mix up until fully coated.
  6. Serve the pesto pasta in bowls and top with the roasted tomatoes, season with a grind of black pepper and add the little bit of leftover grated cheese on top (I also added a pinch of flaked almonds too which were a nice addition)!

I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we did, it’s a real guilt-free comfort meal!

If you have any recipe recommendations, questions or would like to collaborate with me in any way, please just email me at jensfoodblog@gmail.com!

Happy munching!

Jen

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