Edamame Pesto Chicken Pasta

Edamame Pesto Chicken Pasta

This surprising rendition of pesto will have pasta lovers licking their lips.

2 1/2 cups (625 mL) frozen shelled edamame, thawed
1 cup (250 mL) packed cilantro
1/3 cup (80 mL) grated Parmesan cheese
Juice of 1/2 lemon
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 tsp (1 mL) sea salt
1/4 tsp (1 mL) freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup (60 mL) extra-virgin olive oil
1 lb (450 g) whole grain spaghetti
2 tsp (10 mL) grapeseed or other cooking oil
1 lb (450 g) skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into 1 in (2.5 cm) cubes
4 cups (1 L) baby spinach or other tender greens
1/4 cup (60 mL) roughly chopped unsalted roasted almonds

Place 1 cup (250 mL) thawed edamame, cilantro, Parmesan, lemon juice, garlic, salt, and pepper in food processor container and blend until well combined. With machine running, pour in olive oil through feed tube and process until mixture is only slightly chunky. Set aside.

Prepare spaghetti according to package directions. Add remaining edamame to simmering water during the last 3 minutes that pasta is cooking.

Meanwhile, heat oil in skillet over medium heat. Place chicken in skillet and cook until no longer pink, about 6 minutes.

Drain pasta and edamame and place them back in pot along with cooked chicken, pesto, and greens. Stir very well to combine and to wilt greens. Place on serving plates and top with almonds and additional Parmesan if desired.

Serves 6.

Each serving contains: 590 calories; 41 g protein; 20 g total fat (4 g sat. fat, 0 g trans fat); 65 g total carbohydrates (1 g sugars, 4 g fibre); 253 mg sodium 

source: “Little Green Giants“, alive #366, April 2013

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