Cooking Broccoli Pesto & Fusilli

Last week I asked my wife what she wanted for dinner that week. She got out her binder filled with printed and handwritten recipes and pulled out one for Broccoli Pesto & Fusilli which she printed off back in 2008 from 101 Cookbooks. It sounded simple and tasty, plus I always love trying pesto-based dishes. You can click the link to follow the recipe as it’s written, I changed a few things as I went. First off, I nixed the walnuts because they’re not baby friendly right now. I also decided to steam my broccoli instead of blanching like the recipe suggests.

So, I started off by getting a pot of water on the fire for the pasta and then set up my steamer tray in my other pot for the broccoli florets. While the heat worked on those, I got the rest of the pesto ingredients ready by introducing Parmesan, garlic, lemon juice and salt to the food processor. While that appliance waited for the broccoli to finish up–which took about 10 or 12 minutes–I chopped up the suggested handfuls of spinach and also combined that with the drained can of sliced black olives I picked up from the story. The recipe says to add those last, but I figured tossing it all together would be fine.

Once the broccoli was done steaming, I transferred them to the processor and zoomed the pesto together, dripping olive oil in from the top. Once the pasta was done cooking, I drained it and dumped it wholesale into the bowl with the spinach and olives for mixing. After those elements got to know each other, I then poured the pesto in and dinner was ready to be served.

I really liked how this recipe turned out. If I had had some basil lying around, I probably would have thrown some in when making the pesto. The only blunder I made was cooking the whole box of pasta instead of the recommended 8 ounces. The coverage was pretty good the way I made it, but I think the whole thing would have balanced better with less pasta (or more sauce, I guess). All in all, you get the elements of pesto with the addition of broccoli, so this one’s a winner in my book. You could also grill up some chicken, chop it up and add that if you wanted more protein.

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