Sunday, March 17, 2013

Pasta with Broccoli Goat Cheese Pesto

Love broccoli. Mini green trees, who wouldn't love them. But what do you do with the stems? I feel like it is a waste to throw it out, however it is woody and a big stringy so not the best part to just eat raw.

Why not hide it somewhere, but let it still feel like it is important? Like a sauce of some sort. Or a pesto. Excellent idea if I do say so myself!

No microwave at school? No biggie, this dish is just as good cold as it is warm! So next time laugh in the face of your classmates who are eating sad little sammies and veggies and dip because you are rockin a spectacular cold pasta dish. Boo-yah!

OH YA.. this is a nut free pesto! Cool beans yo.

Pasta with Broccoli Goat Cheese Pesto
Time: 20 mins.                        CPS: $1.33                         L of D: Graduate

- 1/2 Broccoli Stem
- 1/2 cup of broccoli florets
- 1 Garlic Clove
- Approx. 5 Basil Leaves (sorry friends, dried basil does NOT work here - just omitting the basil altogether is a better option)
- 2 Tbsp of Goat Cheese (1 for sauce, 1 for topping)
- 1/2 lemon (zest and juice)
- 1/4 cup of Olive Oil
- Pasta for 1 (you be the judge)
- Salt n Pepa

Put on a pot of boiling water to start (make sure it is salted!). In the mean time, chop up the broccoli stem into smaller chunks, and place in a blender along with the florets, garlic, basil and lemon juice. Start a blendin! Once the mixture has been given a head start, add the olive oil. Blend until smooth. It should be a bit thick and kind of pastey.

***Note. If you don't have a good blender, feel free to cook the broccoli a bit ahead of time either in the microwave or whatever. By softening it a bit, it will make it easier to blend.

Add your pasta to your boiling water and cook according to package or until you can eat it (taste test saweet). Probably approx. 8-10 mins?

Right before your pasta is cooked, in a medium sized saucepan over medium heat, pour in your pesto and give it a good stir. Add salt n pepa to taste here. Sprinkle in lemon zest and stir.

Once your pasta is al dente or near complete, using tongs, grab it out of the pot and transfer it directly to the saucepan (without really draining). Stir to coat. At this point if you feel that the sauce is still thick and not coating properly, take a ladle of the pasta water and add about 1 tbsp at a time and continue to stir in the pan. The starch in the water will create a "creamy" consistency in the sauce.

Top with some additional goat cheese and a little basil for some food flare and eat eat eat!

**YES this sauce can be made ahead of time and YES it freezes very well (I have a ton in my freezer right now actually - because I also make too much.. always)

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