Mint Pesto with Penne Pasta and Eggplant

Classic Italian Pesto that uses fresh mint instead of basil!  A wonderful combination for the plant based eater!  

Course Dinner
Cuisine Italian, Vegan
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 4

Ingredients

  • 2 medium organic eggplants
  • sea salt
  • 8 oz penne pasta, I use a gluten free brand
  • 1/2 cup walnut halves

Pesto

  • 1/2 cup fresh mint
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley
  • 1/2 cup fresh raw walnuts
  • 3/4 cup fresh grated parmesan (vegan use non-dariy parm recipe)
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 6 tbsp olive oil
  • sea salt and fresh black pepper
  • 1 tbps pumpkin seeds

Instructions

  1. Cut eggplant into strips about 2 inches long and 1/2 inch thick.

  2. In a colander or bowl add a few pinches of sea salt to eggplant strips and let sit while you prepare the pesto.

  3. For the pesto, place all ingredients in a food processor except the olive oil.  Blend until smooth, then stream the olive oil in gradually until mixture thickens. 

  4. Cook the penne following the instructions on the package. At about 8 minutes add the eggplant cook for another 3-5 minutes. 

  5. Drain well and mix in in 3/4 of the pesto sauce and walnut halves.  Garnish with fresh parsley, walnuts and pumpkin seeds and a dollop of pesto on top.  Serve immediately.