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Walnut Pesto Pasta Salad with Asparagus and Cherry Tomatoes Recipe

Walnut Pesto Pasta Salad with Asparagus and Cherry Tomatoes recipe


This pasta salad mixes penne with a homemade walnut pesto. It has asparagus, cherry tomatoes, and cheese. It's a yummy, fresh dish for lunch or dinner. You mix everything in a bowl and can share it with friends!


1/3 cup walnuts
1 bunch asparagus
1 small package fresh parsley
1 x (8 oz) package diced provolone cheese
3 cloves garlic
2 cups cherry tomatoes
1 lemon
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
12 oz penne pasta
1 x (5 oz) package baby spinach
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt


Fill a large pot with water, add a pinch of salt, and bring to a boil. Add the penne pasta and cook according to package instructions until al dente, about 10 minutes.
Trim the woody ends from the asparagus and cut into 1-inch pieces. Add to the pot with the pasta during the last 3 minutes of cooking.
Drain the pasta and asparagus, then rinse under cold water to cool. Transfer to a large salad bowl.
For the pesto, peel and roughly chop the garlic. Zest the lemon and squeeze its juice into a blender.
Add the garlic, lemon zest, lemon juice, walnuts, Parmesan cheese, parsley leaves, olive oil, salt, and black pepper to the blender. Blend until smooth.
Cut the cherry tomatoes in half and add them to the bowl with the pasta and asparagus.
Add the diced provolone cheese and baby spinach to the bowl.
Pour the walnut pesto over the pasta mixture and toss until everything is well coated.
Serve the pasta salad immediately or chill in the refrigerator before serving.

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