I’m so excited to share another wonderful guest posting from Evelyn Pearce with all of you today!
Evelyn guest posted last month and shared an amazing Eggplant “Meatball” recipe that I’m still raving about. And just like last time, I whipped up her newest recipe myself since it sounded so good and photographed it. You have to give this recipe a try and let me know what you think!
Neopolitan Pappardelle with Walnut Sauce
An interesting dish which originates from the beautiful capital of Campania, Naples – Italy’s third most populated city. Renowned for its culinary delights, this colorful and vibrant coastal city also claims to be the home of ice-cream and pizza.
A great alternative to the usual green or red pesto, this is a quick and easy pasta dish with a distinct nutty flavor and a wonderful texture.
Ingredients (Serves Four)
- 250g walnut pieces
- 2 garlic cloves, sliced
- 40g butter, softened
- 1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
- 2/3 cup flat-leaf parsley leaves
- 3/4 cup olive oil
- 1/3 cup double cream
- 500g pappardelle pasta
- Place walnuts into a dry non-stick frying pan over a medium to high heat.
- Cook for 5 minutes or until toasted, tossing the walnuts in the pan continuously.
- Set aside 2 tablespoons of the walnuts.
- Place the remaining walnuts into a food processor with the garlic, butter, Parmesan and 1/4 cup of the parsley. Process until finely chopped.
- With the processor running, slowly pour oil through the feed tube until a thick paste forms. (note: If you don’t have a food processor, chop up the ingredients finely and mix by hand with the butter, then slowly add in the oil bit by bit.)
- Transfer the mixture to a bowl and stir in the double cream. Season with salt and pepper.
- Cook pasta in a large saucepan of boiling salted water, until just tender (al dente) and drain.
- Return the pasta to the saucepan and add the walnut sauce. Toss over a low heat until well combined.
- Spoon into serving bowls, and top with the remaining parsley and reserved walnuts. Serve & enjoy.
This recipe can be adapted to suit different tastes, for example you can miss out the oil and cream, only add half of the cream, or substitute the cream and butter for dairy-free alternatives.
To boost your vegetable intake and add some more color try incorporating roast pumpkin cubes and steamed green beans or baby spinach.
Walnuts: The superfood for a healthy mind and body
Today, The US is a major producer of walnuts, with the bulk of the nuts coming from California, and it’s believed walnuts have been around as a source of food from as far back as 7,000 B.C. In fact the humble walnut has royal origins. Its botanical name is Juglans regia, which means ‘Jupiter’s royal acorn’ called because, Jupiter – king of the Roman gods, was said to favor it above all others. This is not surprising, because this simple nut has some really amazing qualities.
Compared to other nuts, walnuts have significantly higher amount of omega-3 fatty acids, plus they’re rich in fiber B vitamins, magnesium and antioxidants. They are also one of the best plant sources of protein, making them a great meat substitute for non-meat eaters.
Thanks to the high levels of omega-3 fatty acids they contain, walnuts are very beneficial to all aspects of the cardiovascular system, can help reduce blood pressure, are cholesterol busting, can aid weight management and can promote good brain health. Studies on human subjects from the American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) have also found that a few walnuts per day significantly reduced the risk of prostate cancer, while studies on animals have found similar results on a reduction to the risk of breast cancer. Walnuts are also a key ingredient for healthy hair, as they are an excellent source of B vitamins, selenium, zinc and biotin – an essential nutrient known to strengthen hair, improve hair growth and reduce hair fall. A deficiency of biotin can lead to frequent hair loss and breakage. That’s why dermatologists suggest that building these essential nutrients into your daily diet can help prevent baldness and improve hair growth, and indeed many available treatments today include a winning formula of these vital nutrients. On top of all this, eating walnuts may also help you get a good night’s sleep as they contain melatonin, which has been found to improve sleep patterns.
Better sleep, better hair, better heart to name a few plus points – walnuts really are a true superfood that is worth including in your diet.
In addition to testing out this delicious recipe, why not try snacking on a small handful instead of having a cookie, substituting them for meat in salads and other pasta dishes; or swap pepperoni on a pizza for chopped walnuts.