Serves 4 / This simple, less-expensive pesto uses walnuts, rich in anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids. Be sure they are very fresh; older walnuts can taste bitter. Processing the basil and cheese separately helps each chop more finely and evenly. For even more nutrients, add small broccoli florets to the pasta water 2 minutes before pasta is done.
Prep 14 mins, Cook 26 mins
1 large bunch basil (about 4 ounces)
1/3 cup raw walnuts
½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus 1 tablespoon for topping
2 large cloves garlic, peeled
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
½ pound whole-wheat penne rigate (or other pasta)
1 tablespoon toasted pine nuts or slivered almonds, for garnish
1. Bring a large, salted pot of water to boil.
2. Rinse basil and spin dry. Discard stems. Place leaves in food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Transfer to bowl. Place walnuts, cheese, and garlic in food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Return basil to food processor and, while running, add lemon juice and ¼ cup olive oil in a slow stream until incorporated. Season with sea salt.
3. Add penne to boiling water and cook al dente, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking. Drain and toss with about two-thirds of the pesto, or to taste. Serve immediately, topped with Parmesan cheese and toasted nuts.
PER SERVING: 546 cal, 32g fat (17g mono, 9g poly, 6g sat), 9mg chol, 17g protein, 48g carb, 7g fiber, 234mg sodium