Arugula-Pistachio Pesto Pasta

Arugula grows like a weed in the garden and there’s only so much salad that one can take.  Luckily, it can be used in much the same way as spinach or basil, with an extra peppery punch that is.  It can also bulk out pesto and combines beautifully with whatever herbs are fresh and in season as it does in the recipe below.

This pasta dish works well either cold or hot and it’s really quick to make as long as the pesto is prepared ahead.  You can also just make the pesto solo and enjoy it on crackers, as a dip with veggies or as the bottom layer for a pizza or grilled sandwich.

For the PASTA:

What you need:

  • 1 lb whole spelt fusilli pasta
  • 3 cups sprouted chickpeas
  • 1 recipe arugula-pistachio pesto (about 1 cup, recipe follows) – if you like it really saucy, then make a double batch of the pesto and use a recipe and a half for the pasta

What you do:

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil.
  2. Add the pasta and sprouted chickpeas to the water and cook according to package instructions. The chickpeas must be sprouted or they won’t be cooked at the same time as the pasta. If you don’t sprout chickpeas, then use canned or pre-cooked chickpeas and add them (drained) to the pasta in the last minute of cooking.
  3. Drain it all and return it to the pot.
  4. Add the pesto and combine until chickpeas are well-distributed and everything is evenly coated with pesto.
  5. Serve or store 4-6 portions.

For the PESTO:

What you need:

  • 3 small cloves of garlic, coarsely chopped
  • 3 cups arugula
  • 1/2 cup of unsalted shelled pistachios
  • 1/2 cup fresh oregano leaves
  • 1/3 cup fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley
  • 6 scallions, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 tsp pumpkin seed butter (optional)

What you do:

  1. Blend all ingredients in an upright blender or food processor until smooth. Scrape down the sides regularly to help that happen.
  2. Transfer to a bowl.

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