Friday, July 13, 2012

Kale Chickpea Pesto on Soba with Asparagus and Peas

We've been trying to incorporate a lot more vegetarian dishes into our diet and this one caught my eye while perusing the TasteSpotting website. At first I was like, "eww, kale..." Then as I looked at the recipe I realized the kale is in a pesto. So then I was all like, "Hmmm, maybe.."

Soba noodles are a staple in our house now. They are buckwheat noodles which means they are also Gluten-Free! Without even trying we scarfed down a vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free dinner!

And you know what?

It was awesome!! The textures and flavor were so awesome! We bulked up the veg a little and used a little of the pasta water to get the right consistency in the pesto.

The pesto is so creamy you might think there is cheese in it, but nope, it's the chickpeas and oil! We cut the recipe in half and still had leftover pesto. We're planning to use it in a sandwich for a picnic but it could be used in a variety of ways.

If you're looking for a superfood recipe that tastes amazing, this is it!

Kale Chickpea Pesto on Soba with Asparagus and Peas
Recipe by: Sarah J. Gim
Serves: 4


For the Kale Chickpea Pesto
1 clove garlic
1 bunch kale, chopped
1 cup cooked chickpeas (a can is fine, you’ll have some leftover)
½ teaspoon lemon zest
juice from half a lemon (about 2 tablespoons)
¼-½ cup olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

For the Pasta
soba or any other pasta you prefer
bunch of asparagus, washed and trimmed, and gently sauteed (we used frozen)
1 cup peas (frozen ok, too), dropped into boiling water for about 30 seconds
basically, any other vegetable you want


For the Kale Chickpea Pesto
Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil. Pour in the chopped kale. When the water comes back up to a boil (probably less than 30 seconds), drain the kale and rinse with very cold water.

Pulse garlic in food processor until chopped. You may have to stop the food processor and push the little garlic bits down the sides.

Add kale and chickpeas to food processor and pulse until chopped. Add lemon zest and lemon juice and pulse until chopped. With the food processor running, very slowly drizzle in olive oil until everything in the processor is the consistency of a pesto.

Season with 1 teaspoon salt to start and a few hard turns on a fresh black pepper mill. Adjust according to your taste. Remember that this is a pesto and should be strong and salty, since you will be mixing into pasta, grains, etc. We thinned out the pesto with a tiny bit more olive oil.

For Pasta

Cook soba or pasta. Drain. In a large bowl, combine with vegetables and about half the pesto. Add more pesto as needed.

To make a pretty nest of pasta, use a large fork and “twirl” pasta onto the fork from the large bowl. Gently slide off fork into serving bowl. You will probably have to add asparagus and peas to the nests after.

The rest of the pesto will keep in the fridge, covered, for about a day.


  1. Please where does the 'broccoli' come in?????
    Can U use broccoli instead of kale? or was it
    a faux pas.....sounds delicious. thank you

  2. Thanks for bringing this to my attention. In the ingredients it says "any other vegetable you want" meaning in additional to or substituted for the peas or asparagus. However it does look confusing so I'm going to take the broccoli out. Thanks!


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