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Pasta with Arugula Pesto

Bentox Lunch Box with Pasta Salad
Source: Flickr


1/4 cup chopped walnuts
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups coarsely chopped arugula, stems included
1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh basil
1/2 cup olive oil
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
salt to taste
1 pinch cayenne pepper
1 (16 ounce) package dry pasta


Combine the walnuts, garlic, arugula, and cilantro or basil in a food processor or blender. Whirl them just until they are coarsely chopped. While the machine is running, add the olive oil in a thin stream. Transfer the pesto to a bowl. (At this point the pesto can be frozen. Thaw it before proceeding.)
Stir the Parmesan cheese, salt, and cayenne into the pesto
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta, and cook it, stirring occasionally, until it is just tender. Drain the pasta, return it to the empty pot, and toss it with the pesto, adding a tablespoon or two of water if necessary to distribute the pesto evenly.
Transfer the pasta to a serving bowl or to individual plates, garnish with additional Parmesan cheese and serve.