Arugula Pesto Pasta

If you have boatloads of arugula, this is a terrific way to ensure it doesn’t go to waste. Arugula pesto has a little bite to it and packed with bold flavor. It whips up in the time it takes to boil the pasta, so it’s a terrific weeknight meal and a wonderful way to get in some extra greens!

Arugula Pesto Pasta - Produce On Parade - If you have boatloads of arugula, this is a terrific way to ensure it doesn’t go to waste. Arugula pesto has a little bite to it and packed with bold flavor. It whips up in the time it takes to boil the pasta, so it’s a terrific weeknight meal and a wonderful way to get in some extra greens!

I am so thrilled to be a part of a local, organic CSA that's only eight miles from my house! We used to get those Full Circle boxes. It's an organic CSA that's packaged up here in Alaska but includes produce from about five northwestern states; you can also get some far-reaching produce like avocados from Mexico. However, their quality seemed to be going downhill and I really wanted the produce to be actually local. Where I live, in the Matanuska Valley in Alaska, thrives a rich agricultural community and I knew I could find a great CSA out here. That's when I found Sun Circle Farms (not an ad or sponsor, just excited)! I even have a friend who works there, and it feels great supporting a small, hometown farm. 

Included in the first box were Japanese turnips, a ton of spring salad mix, rhubarb, bok choy, chives, and a ton of arugula. Using the spring salad mix for salads (Todd and I both eating one a day for a week, go greens!), I had to think of something else to do with the arugula other than using it in a salad. That's when I thought of this pesto! You can seriously use pretty much any veggie that is green for pesto. I even have a recipe on the blog broccoli pesto. Yup. 

Unfortunately, Todd hates pesto. I know right!? Seriously, who is this man!? I have never in my life heard anyone who claims to be anything other than beyond ecstatic about the stuff, myself included. Oh well, more pesto for me! #pestoisthebesto

Also, If you participate in a CSA, you're probably getting pretty similar produce as I am. Check out my social media to see what I've been making with mine for some great ideas! Sometimes it's hard to use up all that fresh produce before the next provisions roll around!

Arugula Pesto Pasta - Produce On Parade - If you have boatloads of arugula, this is a terrific way to ensure it doesn’t go to waste. Arugula pesto has a little bite to it and packed with bold flavor. It whips up in the time it takes to boil the pasta, so it’s a terrific weeknight meal and a wonderful way to get in some extra greens!

Arugula Pesto Pasta

Kathleen Henry @ Produce On Parade

Published 06/21/2017

If you have boatloads of arugula, this is a terrific way to ensure it doesn’t go to waste. Arugula pesto has a little bite to it and packed with bold flavor. It whips up in the time it takes to boil the pasta, so it’s a terrific weeknight meal and a wonderful way to get in some extra greens!

Ingredients

  • 1 lb dry penne pasta
  • 4 whole garlic cloves, peeled
  • Heaping ¼ cup walnuts
  • 8 oz fresh arugula (about 4 packed cups)
  • Small handful of fresh basil (about ¼ packed cup) (optional)
  • 3 tbsp miso paste
  • ⅓ cup vegan mozzarella
  • 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • ¾ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Dash of freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to boil for the pasta, cook according to package until al dente; drain and set aside.
  2. Process the garlic in a food processor for about ten seconds; add the walnuts and process until finely chopped. Add the arugula and in batches, as much as the bowl can hold, and process until smooth. Process in the miso paste, mozzarella, nutritional yeast, and pepper. With the processor running drizzle in the olive oil and process until smooth. Taste and add additional pepper and salt as needed.
  3. Stir the pesto into the cooked pasta. There will be about ½ cup of pesto leftover. It’s great to add to the leftovers when reheated or save to coat boiled potatoes, use in stuffed mushrooms, or for vegan pesto scrambled tofu. Yum!

Yield: 6-8 servings

Arugula Pesto Pasta - Produce On Parade - If you have boatloads of arugula, this is a terrific way to ensure it doesn’t go to waste. Arugula pesto has a little bite to it and packed with bold flavor. It whips up in the time it takes to boil the pasta, so it’s a terrific weeknight meal and a wonderful way to get in some extra greens!

I just couldn't resist throwing up a photo of Oliver eating his first solid foods meal. Well, if rice cereal is considered 'solid' ;) He is in full-swing teething mode; two toppers and two bottom-dwellers should be popping out soon!

Where does the time go!? I feel like just yesterday we were leaving the hospital like, "Um, so are you sure we just take him? Are you coming with us? I don't think we're responsible enough for a human life! Are you sure we just walk out of here with this new human???" Somehow though, it also feels like he's always been a part of our lives. It's so strange. 

produce on parade

Walnut Steamed Beets & Greens with Miso Balsamic Drizzle

Life is as dear to a mute creature as it is to man. Just as one wants happiness and fears pain, just as one wants to live and not die, so do other creatures.
— Dalai Lama

Guess what?? I'm back and so happy to share this little space with you again! However, this week won't offer any respite from the busyness and excitement that is my absolute existence right now. With this crazy tornado of wonderful, big life moments and teeny pesky nuisances that've got me whipping about, the recipes for the next few days will be quick to prepare and most importantly, easy, and fairly hands-off too. 

The first morning I was back, I went to the store in the bleak, early hours before work to get coffee creamer. Duh. Forget food, I need just need vanilla soy creamer to survive apparently. Let me tell you what. That is the best time to go to the store. It's totally stocked, there's no one around except other tired, zombiesc, antisocial people like myself who don't want anything to do with anyone else. And...I found the most gorgeous organic beets with their luscious, velvety greens still attached! Jackpot! My little hands couldn't snatch them up fast enough!

In a rare moment of clarity, I decided to dress the beets and their greens in an quick, miso balsamic reduction and pepper them with warm and crunchy walnuts. This humble dish is a nutritional powerhouse that will hopefully catapult me into the chaos that's lurking in the future and help me battle the wretched and regrettable four hour time difference between Alaska and Ohio. My bedtime is now 6pm sharp (instead of the usual 10pm). It's all I can do to walk to my car on my way out of work with my eyes actually open as I'm just about asleep! A day off when we got back would have been most helpful. Lesson learned.

Produce On Parade - Walnut Steamed Beets & Greens with Miso Balsamic Drizzle
Produce On Parade - Walnut Steamed Beets & Greens with Miso Balsamic Drizzle
Produce On Parade - Walnut Steamed Beets & Greens with Miso Balsamic Drizzle
Produce On Parade - Walnut Steamed Beets & Greens with Miso Balsamic Drizzle

I love, love, love beets and I'll eat them pretty much anyway at all, but this dish was absolutely, incredibly delicious! A new favorite way to eat up those red little gems...and their greens too! 

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Walnut Steamed Beets & Greens with Miso Balsamic Drizzle
An easy and impressive side dish. Layered, sliced steamed beets are adorned with crunchy walnuts and their own sauteed greens, then drizzled with a miso balsamic reduction. NOTE: Beet greens tend to age very quickly, so be sure to try to use the day they are purchased.
Ingredients
  • 4 medium red beets, with greens
  • 2 Tbsp. walnut oil (or olive oil)
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 cup brown onion, diced small
  • dash of red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 heaping cup of walnuts, chopped
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 Tbsp. miso paste (I like red)
Instructions
First, prepare your steamer to steam the beets.Cut off the leaves of the beets, leaving about one inch attached to the top of the beet. Scrub the beets very well and place whole in the prepared steamer for about 30-60 minutes. My beets only took 30 minutes, but time will vary depending on the size. Remove when fork tender and allow to cool.In a very large rimmed frying pan, heat the walnut oil over medium-low. Add the garlic, onions, red pepper flakes, and walnuts. Sauté for about 5 minutes, until the onions begin to brown. Meanwhile, wash the beet greens. Rip off the stems to discard (or feed to a furry companion) and tear the leaves into bite size pieces. Spin dry in a salad spinner or pat dry with a towel. Add to the frying pan and sauté for an additional 5 minutes until wilted but still bright green. Remove from heat and allow to rest until the beets are done steaming. In a microwave safe 1 cup Pyrex measuring cup (or medium bowl), heat the vinegar for 1 minute. Then, continue in 30 second intervals until about half has evaporated. Be sure to allow the microwave to actually stop in between the intervals. Careful not to let it burn! This should only take about 2 minutes total. Remove from the microwave and allow to cool until the beets are ready, then whisk in the miso paste. When the beets are done steaming and have cooled slightly, cut off the top and the end bit, and then slice. You can peel them if you like but I prefer not to. To serve, arrange one sliced beet in a small bowl. Top with ¼ of the cooked greens and drizzle with a little of the miso vinegar glaze. A little goes a long way!
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 4
Produce On Parade - Walnut Steamed Beets & Greens with Miso Balsamic Drizzle

German Word of The Day

Balsamic --> balsamisch (bah-zal-misch)

Good Deed of The Day

Drilling for oil in the Arctic Ocean? Have we seriously learned nothing? Help urge Secretary Jewell to say no to offshore oil drilling in these remote waters that provide critical habitat for polar bears, whales, walrus and more, who are already suffering the effects of climate change!