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Kale Pesto Cavatelli with Crispy Brussels and Sundried Tomatoes

Ingredients
  1. 7 oz Brussels sprouts
  2. 8 oz cavatelli pasta
  3. 1 lemon
  4. Fresh basil
  5. 4 oz Lacinato kale
  6. 2 garlic cloves
  7. 2 tbsp almonds
  8. 1/4 tsp chili flakes
  9. 1 oz sun-dried tomatoes
  10. 3 tbsp + 1/2 tsp olive oil*
  11. Salt and pepper*
  12. *Not included
Summary
  • Prep time: 30 minutes
  • Servings: 2
Nutrition
  • Calories: 750
  • Fat: 30
  • Carbohydrates: 110
  • Protein: 22

You’ll want to cozy up with this winter take on a classic summer pasta dish. The basil in the pesto is a background note, there to play a supporting role to the main star: Lacinato kale. It adds a great nutritional boost to the pesto, along with almonds in lieu of the traditional pine nut. Sun-dried tomatoes and crispy Brussels sprouts round things out for a meal that’s delightfully earthy and hugely satisfying.

Instructions
1. TRIM THE BRUSSELS
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Salt a large pot of water and put it on to boil. Preheat your oven to 450 °F. Rinse and dry the Brussel sprouts, trim the ends, and peel off as many of the leaves as you can. Reserve the inner cores of the sprouts. On a baking sheet, toss the leaves with 1 tbsp olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper. Put in oven and bake until crispy and brown in spots, about 6 to 7 minutes.

2. COOK THE PASTA
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Add the cavatelli to the boiling water. Stir occasionally, and start tasting the pasta after 8 minutes. Cook until al dente, and reserve 1/2 cup of the cooking water. Drain the pasta in a colander. Toss the pasta with a ½ tsp of olive oil to prevent sticking, and return to the pot, off of the heat.

3. PRESTO PESTO
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Rinse the lemon. Rinse and dry the basil. Rinse the kale leaves, remove the stems, and discard stems. Add basil, kale, garlic, almonds, 2 tbsp olive oil, chili flakes (use more or less depending on your affinity for heat), the reserved pasta water, and the juice from half the lemon to the bowl of a food processor. Blend until smooth, and season to taste with salt and pepper.

4. SLICE THE SUN-DRIED TOMATOES
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Slice the sun-dried tomatoes thinly lengthwise. Be careful, as the oil they’re packed in can make the tomatoes a little bit slippery! Set aside.

5. MIX IT ALL UP
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Add the kale pesto to the cavatelli pasta in the pot, along with ¾ of the crispy Brussels sprout leaves. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and toss well.

6. SERVE!
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Serve the kale pesto pasta in large bowls, and top with the sun-dried tomatoes and the remaining Brussels sprout leaves. Enjoy!