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Summer Pesto Salad

This makes a nice dinner but also a good cold salad to take to potlucks, BBQs, and picnics.

For the pesto sauce:

  • A bunch of “cooking greens” – assorted leaves of kale, chard, etc.
  • 1/2 cup walnut halves (broken down into smaller pieces)
  • the green parts of 2 scallions, chopped
  • 1/2 clove garlic
  • 1/3 cup (about) grated Parmesan or Gran Padano
  • olive oil (good kind for salads, not for cooking)

Cut or tear the green leafy part off the stems (de-rib), and then into smaller pieces. Steam (or sauté quickly, if you prefer) the greens for about 5 minutes, until sightly limp. Chop up walnuts and garlic. Add greens, garlic, nuts, and scallions into food processor. Blend while adding olive oil until the mixture becomes smooth. Add in the grated cheese (unless using the pesto later), and mix together.

For the salad:

  • About 1/2 lb green beans
  • 1/2 cup edamame (frozen) – or peas
  • 1 cup fusilli (dry)
  • 2 scallions (white parts only)

Prep the green beans, and cut larger ones in half, as needed. Then steam the green beans until just tender; about 5 – 10 minutes or so. Cook about a cup of fusilli along with 1/2 cup edamame; drain. In a warm pot, heat a bit of olive oil over low heat and sauté the white parts of two scallions (chopped). Turn off heat, add the rest of the ingredients to the scallions, and toss pasta, edamame, green beans, and pesto sauce until well mixed. If desired, add in a handful of cherry tomatoes (quartered). Salt to taste. You could also mix in some goat cheese or feta. Serve at room temperature or cold.

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