HEALTHY GREEK PESTO PASTA

 

BY MARIA SAKELLARIDI

Ingredients

                2 cups whole wheat or gluten free any shape pasta, uncooked

                1 cup pasta water

                2 large garlic cloves, minced

                1 tbsp olive oil, extra virgin

                1/4 cup + 2 tbsp pesto, divided (organic or all natural)

                2 cups grape tomatoes, cut in halves

                 2 cups cucumber ,cut in halves

                 4 cups small broccoli florets

                  1/3 cup sun dried tomatoes, thinly sliced

                  1/2 cup (2 oz) capers 

                  1/2 tsp salt

                  1/2 tsp ground black pepper

                   1/8 tsp or more red pepper flakes

                   1/3 cup fresh basil for food styling

Tip: If you want, you can add 1/2 cup (2 oz) Parmesan cheese shredded

     

                                                         Directions

1       Cook pasta as per package instructions, reserve 1 cup of pasta water, drain and set aside.

2       While pasta is cooking, get all ingredients ready. Preheat large deep skillet on medium heat and add olive oil and garlic. Saute for 30 seconds, stirring frequently. Add 1 tbsp pesto, tomatoes and stir. Cook for 1 – 2 minutes and stir again.

Cook another 1 – 2 minutes.

  Move to one side of the skillet and make sure the empty side of is positioned directly over heat. Add 1 tbsp pesto and broccoli, stir and cook for 4 minutes, stirring once.

3       Remove skillet from heat and add remaining 1/4 cup pesto, sun dried tomatoes, cucumber, capers, salt, black pepper, red pepper flakes, pasta and pasta water. Stir gently and let flavours marinate for a few minutes. Do not cover because broccoli will become a mushy mess. I also like to add half Parmesan cheese in this step and the other half right before serving. Serve hot.

4       Storage Instructions: Refrigerate covered for up to 3 – 5 days.

Nutritional Info

Servings Per Recipe: 6

Amount Per Serving = 1 + 1/3 cups:

Calories: 239.1

Total Fat: 11.6 g

Cholesterol: 6.7 mg

Sodium: 423.5 mg

Total Carbs: 26.3 g

Dietary Fiber: 4.3 g

Protein: 9.3 g

Bon Appetit!