Last weekend I attended yet another potluck dinner. Something about the summer just screams “potluck,” I guess. For this one, I threw together not one but two pesto pasta salads: a regular one made with semolina pasta and olive oil, to share with the crowd, and a fat-free, healthier version made with whole wheat pasta for myself.
In my healthier version, I used canned artichokes to replace the olive oil and omitted the nuts I normally use, and though I think blending a quarter cup of nuts into the sauce would have made it richer and more flavorful, it was still very tasty for such a super-light pesto. If you’re looking for a pesto with a little more richness, I recommend either the Asparagus Pesto Pasta Salad that I blogged about last month or my creamy Pesto Pasta Salad that’s based on silken tofu.
Artichoke Pesto Pasta Salad
- 1 cup basil, packed
- 1 can quartered artichoke hearts (packed in water)
- 1-2 cloves garlic
- 1 tbsp. nutritional yeast
- 2 tbsp. vegetable broth
- 1/2 tbsp. lemon juice
- salt, to taste
- 8 ounces whole wheat pasta, cooked
- 1 large tomato, diced
- 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts (optional)
- Place the basil and 3 artichoke hearts (12 quarters) in a food processor, and pulse to coarsely chop. Add the garlic, nutritional yeast, vegetable broth, and lemon juice, and process until it becomes a thick paste. Add salt to taste.
- In a serving bowl, combine the cooked pasta with the pesto and blend well. Add the remaining artichoke hearts, the tomato, and the pine nuts and toss. Serve at room temperature.
Preparation time: 10 minute(s) | Cooking time: 10 minute(s)
Number of servings (yield): 4
Per serving (with pinenuts): 366 Calories (kcal); 6 g Total Fat; (13% calories from fat); 19 g Protein; 70 g Carbohydrate; 0 mg Cholesterol; 116 mg Sodium; 19 g Fiber.
Without pinenuts: 318 Calories (kcal); 2 g Total Fat; (4% calories from fat); 17 g Protein; 69 g Carbohydrate; 0mg Cholesterol; 116 mg Sodium; 19 g Fiber.