Super simple olive and walnut pesto-like sauce is perfect for a mealtime pasta dish.
- 1/2 pound pasta – white, whole wheat, gluten free – as long as it has some nooks and crannys
- 1 clove garlic, peeled
- 1 large handful parsley
- 4 large kale leaves, stems removed
- 1 1/2 cups green olives, pitted but not stuffed, about 6-7 ounces
- 1/3 cup walnuts
- 2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
- 3-4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
- Parmesan cheese, optional
- Fill large saucepan with water and set over high heat to bring to a boil. Once boiling, add 1 tablespoon of salt and the pasta. Cook until al dente, about 7 minutes, or according to time on package. Strain.
- While pasta cooks, set up a food processor with the blade attachment. Add garlic clove and chop. Scrape down sides, tear leaves of kale and add to the garlic along with a generous handful of parsley leaves. Add a splash of red wine vinegar along with 3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil. Process until finely chopped.
- Scrape sides again, add olives and walnuts. Pulse until mixture is homogenous but still chunky. Check seasoning and add salt, pepper or another splash of vinegar to taste. For a slightly looser sauce, add another tablespoon of olive oil.
- Once pasta is strained, place back in the pot used for cooking and toss with the walnut and green olive mixture until pasta is well coated. Check seasoning one last time and adjust as necessary. Scoop pasta with walnuts and green olives into serving bowls and top with grated parmesan cheese if desired.
The best pasta for this dish is something with nooks and cranny’s so the sauce can get stuck all up in there and give each bite exceptional flavor. However, with so many alternative options on the market today, you can use whichever healthier variety you prefer such as chickpea pasta, whole wheat pasta, protein pasta, etc.
Keywords: green olives, pesto, pasta, easy pasta recipes, walnuts, how to make pesto