Walnut and Olive Pasta

Walnut & Olive Pasta

I had a bag of walnuts in my cupboard from something I must’ve made a million years ago. I am always worried that stuff will go bad waiting for me to make something with it so I decided that I needed to use them up. So I searched through my “1000 Vegetarian Recipes from Around the World” cookbook and found a recipe that looked fairly simple. The only thing that is difficult about this recipe is cleaning out your food processor after you’ve finished making it. This stuff is actually so good that I’m considering making another batch tonight and putting it in the fridge to use over spaghetti later this week in case I don’t want to cook anything terribly difficult one of these days. It was pretty dang good. Instead of blending the olive oil with the sauce I left it out and I put a swirl of olive oil on top as well as some dried parsley (I didn’t feel like buying fresh this time around). I kind of treated it like it was hummus. I actually marinated the dried parsley in the olive oil for a bit to soften it up a bit. I’ll definitely make this again the next time that I have a bunch of walnuts that I’m worried will go bad. It would actually work well as a dip for crackers or pita bread…the texture is so comparable to hummus.

Walnut and Olive Pasta

2 slices whole wheat bread, crusts removed
1 1/4 cups milk
2 1/2 cups shelled walnuts
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup pitted black olives
2/3 cup Parmesan cheese
8 tablespoons olive oil
5/8 cup heavy cream
1 lb. fettucine
salt and pepper (to taste)
2-3 tablespoons fresh parsley

1. Put the bread in a shallow dish. Pour over the milk and let it soak till the liquid has been absorbed.
2. Toast the walnuts in the oven. Let them cool.
3. Put the soaked bread, walnuts, garlic, olives, Parmesan cheese and 6 tablespoons of the olive oil in a food processor and work to make a paste.
3. Season to taste with salt and pepper and stir in the cream.
4. Bring a lightly salted pan of water to a boil. Add the fettucine and cook till tender.
5. Drain the fettucine and toss with the remaining olive oil.
6. Serve the fettucine with the sauce on top.
7. If you are doing it the way I did, leave a small well in the sauce on top and fill it with some of the olive oil and dried parsley mixture.

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