Frugal Healthy Recipe: Easy Walnut Pesto

By Marissa Bognanno, Professional Chef & Zumba Instructor, and Author / Owner of THE BOOT BLOG

"Wow, a morning at the beach makes you really hungry!" said Brittany as she reached for seconds of our creation - Walnut Pesto Pasta Salad. We chopped a cucumber, some super fresh and juicy cherry tomatoes and tossed it all with al dente penne pasta and two big scoops of fresh pesto. I don't know, Britt, a morning at the beach makes me hungry too, but I think our pesto was just really good.
[post-beach walnut cracking!]
Easy Walnut Pesto
2 cups packed, fresh basil leaves
1 garlic clove
1/4 cup walnuts
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup parmigiano reggiano cheese
salt + pepper to taste

Toast the walnuts for a few minutes until fragrant in the toaste. Combine all ingredients, except salt and pepper, in a food processor. Blend until smooth. Season with salt and pepper at the end.

To make the Walnut Pesto Pasta Salad: Chop one cucumber, and ten cherry tomatoes. Season with salt, pepper and a tablespoon of olive oil in a big bowl and set aside. Boil and strain about a 1/2 pound of penne pasta and toss in the bowl with 2 tablespoons of the pesto. Serve with more grated cheese.

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