I don’t know about you but lately I have been putting pesto on everything! I have been giving the traditional basil sauce a bit of a twist by adding in different herbs such as parsley or coriander and whatever greenery I can get my hands on. This green goddess pesto is packed full of natural superfoods, from the brain boosting walnuts to the all round amazing extra virgin olive oil (the only oil you should be making pesto with!).
I have also recently discovered mung bean pasta, a type of pasta made using mung beans and edamame instead of refined wheat flour, while this pasta has a slightly different texture it also has way more fibre (18g per serve) and heaps of protein (43g per serve – so valuable for vegetarians and vegans), plus its a gluten free pasta that doesn’t cook into a mushy mess. You can find mung bean pasta in speciality supermarkets and health food shops. I had mine sent to me from this online site.
Don’t be afraid of adding so much extra-virgin olive oil to the sauce, it has been proven to be good for us in so many ways, not only because of its powerful anti-oxidant and polyphenol content but also because it can help us to absorb nutrients from other foods too. To date, regularly consuming olive oil has been linked to reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, beneficial to brain health and can help with healthy weight maintenance.
- 1 large bunch basil (or 2-3 smaller bunches), leaves only
- 3 florets broccoli
- large handful spinach or kale
- 1 clove garlic, peeled
- large handful walnuts
- ⅓ cup extra virgin olive oil
- juice and grated zest of 1 lemon
- salt and pepper to season
- The pasta:
- 200g mung bean pasta
- 200g cherry tomatoes
- 1 zucchini
- 1 small leek
- ⅔ cup peas
- ½ avocado, peeled
- extra virgin olive oil, extra to cook
- To make the pesto, place all the ingredients (basil, broccoli, spinach, garlic,walnuts, olive oil, lemon juice and zest) into a food processor or high powered blender and blend until just smooth. Taste and season with freshly cracked pepper and salt.
- Heat the oven to 180C (fan forced), place the tomatoes in a baking tray/roasting tray and drizzle with olive oil. Place in the oven to roast for 10-20 mins or until the skins are just starting to split.
- Cook the pasta according to packet directions, until just al dente. Drain and rinse.
- Meanwhile, wash the leek and finely chop, slice the zucchini thinly. Heat a little olive oil in a non-stick pan and add the leek, stirring frequently until beginning to soften. Add the zucchini and continue stirring until just beginning to get a little tender. Add the peas to the pan in the last few mins of cooking. Add the pasta to the pan with the veg and stir in enough pesto to give everything a good coating, stir until just warm. Serve the pasta topped with thinly shaved avocado and the roasted tomatoes.