Broccoli Pesto

In my new(ish) thrift store mixing bowl!

This recipe for Broccoli Pesto with Fusilli Pasta intrigued me. I couldn’t imagine a pesto without basil in it. I love broccoli so I just had to try this one out. Jake and I made some adjustments though, so we didn’t have to run to the store for the things we didn’t have. We used penne pasta instead of fusilli, which is probably our favorite mode of delivering pesto to our mouths. Just so my readers are aware, this recipe made a TON of pesto. We usually like our pesto in small amounts. We’re not fans of the globbin’ it on kind of pesto-ed pasta. A touch of taste is all we need. This recipe made so much pesto that I cooked the rest of the box of penne the next day to toss into the leftovers for lunch so we could disburse the pesto sauce a little bit more. This is probably a double batch or dinner party kind of recipe for those of you who feel the same way about pesto as we do. For those of you who are the glob-it-‘n-go kind, this recipe should make enough pesto sauce for you to be completely happy about life. And in the end, isn’t that everyone’s goal?

Broccoli Pesto
1 medium head of broccoli (about 3 cups), cut into small florets
1/2 cup walnuts, toasted
1/3 cup mozzarella, grated or cut into small chunks
1 clove of garlic
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
8 ounces dried whole wheat pasta
3 cups baby spinach
1 15-oz. can pitted black olives, drained, rinsed and cut in half
2-3 roma tomatoes, chopped, to garnish

1. In a large pot of salted boiling water, cook the broccoli for no more than 20 seconds.
2. Drain the broccoli and run cold water over it, draining thoroughly again.
3. Blend the broccoli in a blender along with the walnuts, mozzarella, garlic, lemon juice and salt. Add the olive oil little by little while blending. Add more salt or lemon juice if needed and set aside.
4. Cook the pasta till just barely tender. Then drain and transfer to a large serving bowl.
5. Stir in the spinach and about half to three-quarters of the pesto.
6. Top with olives, black pepper and fresh cut roma tomatoes to serve.

Broccoli Pesto


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