Spinach-Walnut Pesto Tortellini
Hello everyone! One thing I learned early on in my healthy lifestyle transition is the importance of carbohydrates (carbs). Carbs are really important because it provides energy for your body. For years, many people said carbs are bad, and we should stay away from carbs if we want to lose weight. That is not true. Yes, there are so many diet out there such as keto and paleo diet that eliminate carbs completely, but from my personal experience, carbs are not bad. The key is to eat carbs in moderation, which means measure your carbs to your calorie intake for the day.
Once I realized carbs are not my enemy, I began to incorporate carbs into my diet. I began to come up with recipes that are delicious and quick to make like this spinach-walnut pesto tortellini. This dish is a twist on the classic basil-pine nut pesto, but it is equally delicious. It is nutty with a hint of lime and blends perfectly with the five cheese tortellini I bought at Costco. The trick to make this dish quick is to buy pre-made pasta and make your own sauce. This trick saves so much time, especially on school nights or busy weekdays. With that being said, here is the recipe.
Food processor (substitute with blender or magic bullet)
2 handfuls spinach
1 garlic clove
1 large lime
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste
1 small head of broccoli
In a small skillet or pan toast walnuts over medium heat until toasted. The toasted walnuts will had more flavor to the pesto than non-toasted walnuts.
Bring a pot of salted water to a boil for the tortellini
In a food processor, blender or magic bullet, throw in toasted walnuts, spinach, garlic, lime juice and parmesan cheese, pulse. While it is pulsing, add the extra virgin olive oil. Once it has blended to a smooth consistency, add salt and pepper to taste.
At this point the water should have boiled. Throw in the tortellini and cook pasta to the instructions on the box.
The cooking process should take about 2 minutes.Meanwhile, in a large pan over medium heat add mushrooms and broccoli to pan to soften before adding the pasta.
Use a small strainer to fish out the pasta directly from the pot to the pan. It is OK if pasta water drips into the pan because it will add flavor to the pesto. Once all the tortellini is in the pan, add 4-5 tablespoons of homemade pesto. You may add more or less.
Lastly, mix all together with a wooden spoon or spatula and serve. Add steak, chicken or shrimp into the dish, or leave it as it is for a great vegetarian option.
Hopefully you try this recipe out! If you do, please let me know in the comments below.