Looking for a healthy, balanced, light, and tasty lunch? Here it is!
Today we suggest courgette and almond pesto with low-fat cottage cheese and a special ingredient that makes this dish unique and fragrant: grated lemon zest. It is ready in just 10 minutes; it is light, healthy, and complete of all nutrients as well. In one dish you have carbohydrates (Pennoni), fibre and vitamins (courgette), good fats (almonds and extra virgin olive oil) and proteins (cottage cheese).
This is a perfect dish for a quick summer lunch at home or on the beach, or for a fresh and light sunset dinner on the veranda.
Don’t like almonds? No problem: you can replace them with any other type of nut such as hazelnuts, peanuts, cashews, pistachios, and walnuts. For a more winter version, on the other hand, we recommend using walnuts, replacing lemon with orange, and adding a few dried tomatoes – you’ll love it.
Pennoni with courgette and almond pesto, with low-fat cottage cheese and lemon
INGREDIENTS for 4 servings:
- 360 g Pennoni
- 250 g courgettes
- 40 g almonds
- 15 fresh basil leaves
- 100 g low-fat cottage cheese
- Extra virgin olive oil to taste
- Organic lemon (untreated)
- Salt to taste
- RHeat a non-stick pan over high heat with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, then add the courgettes previously washed and cut into small pieces and sauté them over high heat for a few second. Pour two tablespoons of water, lower the heat to a minimum, close with the lid, and cook for about ten minutes.
- In the meantime, bring plenty of water to a boil with one/two tablespoons of coarse salt, then pour in the Pennoni and cook for the time indicated on the package.
- Once the courgettes are ready, pass them through the mixer together with the almonds, the washed basil leaves, the grated zest of 1/4 lemon, a pinch of table salt, and two drizzles of extra virgin olive oil. Chop until the mix turns creamy, adding more extra virgin olive oil if necessary. Finally, add the low-fat cottage cheese and re-operate the mixer for a few seconds, just long enough to mix everything once more.
- Drain the pasta and season it with the courgette and almond pesto, if necessary add a little cooking water to make it creamier. Serve with a sprinkling of hand-chopped almonds.
If you have some pesto left over, don’t throw it away! You can freeze it and reuse it even for an aperitif or appetizer, spread on toasted bread, friselle, bruschetta, and much more.