Pistachios make an interesting and tasty addition to this pesto. Look for roasted pistachios that are in the shell because they're more economical than shelled nuts.
8 ounces uncooked penne pasta
1 cup packed fresh basil leaves
1/4 cup roasted shelled pistachios
6 garlic cloves
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 cups chopped seeded peeled tomato
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 (15-ounce) can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1 (5-ounce) package arugula
1/4 cup (1 ounce) shredded fresh pecorino Romano cheese
How to Make It
Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain and rinse with cold water. Drain.
Combine basil, nuts, and garlic in a food processor; process until finely chopped. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add olive oil to pan, and swirl to coat. Add basil mixture, and cook for 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in pasta, tomato, and next 3 ingredients (through beans); cook for 2 minutes or until thoroughly heated, tossing to combine. Remove from heat. Add arugula to pan, and toss to slightly wilt. Place about 1 1/4 cups pasta mixture in each of 4 bowls, and top each serving with 1 tablespoon cheese.
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This recipe was fairly easy and had good flavor. The pesto made the entire house smell like a dream. The pasta was a little dry, but maybe that is because I used whole wheat pasta. I would definitely make it again, next time with more tomatoes and spinach.
Served this by itself dinner for my husband and me, I used baby spinach instead of arugula because my husband doesn't like arugula but it still was awesome. I tried using blender instead of food processor but it wouldn't chop so I added the olive oil to the blender and just dumped it all in the pan, came out great and I'm looking forward to leftovers tonight. I would serve this to company, it's very attractive.
Simple to make and very tasty, I had picked up garbanzo beans by mistake at the market and they were very good in the mix instead of the white beans. Was also good using a mix of field greens in place of the arugula, might also try with some feta cheese mixed in