BUCKWHEAT NOODLES WITH KALE PESTO AND VEGAN PARMESAN

I know, I know. This doesn’t do much for our reputation as being kale-smoothie guzzling hippies, but I just…can’t…help…myself with this one! Kale pesto, smothered on steaming hot noodles, is a match made in heaven. Not to mention all that Vitamin K!

Folks, this recipe is EASY street. The pesto keeps for about a week in the fridge and noods take, what, 5 minutes to cook? The Parmesan (if you choose to add…but who’s kidding who…just do it) can also be made in advance and stored for a long time in the cupboard as it contains only dry ingredients.

This is a beautiful dish to serve to guests, who will not only appreciate how pretty their plate is, but also your effort to amp up their fibre intake.

The kale pesto is adapted from a Front Door Organics recipe and the Parmesan is adapted from a Simple Vegan Blog recipe. 

Yield: 4 servings
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes 

Ingredients:
8-10 leaves kale, stems removed
1/2 cup fresh basil
1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes
1/4 cup olive oil
1-2 garlic cloves
1/3 cup sunflower seeds
juice from 1/2 lemon
salt and pepper
1/2 cup parsley
2-3 tbsp vegan parmesan* (optional)
250 grams buckwheat noodles (I used King Soba Sweet Potato & Buckwheat)
Toppings such as grilled red peppers, black olives, fresh micro greens or herbs (optional)

Directions: 
Use a food processor on pulse to chop the kale, basil, garlic, sunflower seeds, sun-dried tomatoes and lemon juice until finely chopped. Gradually add the olive oil and season with salt and pepper as needed. Set aside.

Cook noodles according to package directions, approximately 5-6 minutes

Use about 1/4 cup of the kale pesto mixture per serving of pasta. Mix throughly with warm noodles and serve. Enjoy!

*For the parmesan: combine 1 cup unsalted cashews, 4 tbsp nutritional yeast, and 1tsp fine sea salt in a food processor or blender until mixture is crumbly and fine.

Feeling Lawless? Pesto can really be made with anything green. I’ve made pesto from cilantro, basil, etc. You want to make sure there’s enough olive oil to get it nice and smooth, and salt is also key. Then take the flavour where you want it. Extra garlic? No problem. Toasted pine nuts vs. sunflower seeds? Go for it! The best way to perfect your pesto is to just play around with it – keep adding more of what you like until it’s perfect (and don’t worry, too much pesto is never a bad thing – use on sandwiches, pasta and as a dip throughout the week).

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