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Penne with Creamy Nut Sauce

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This simple recipe has such much flavor and wonderful texture. Make it a regular on your dinner table during the cold winter months.

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: Serves 6

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup walnut pieces
  • 1 slice whole grain bread
  • 2/3 cup buttermilk
  • 1 tsp. dried thyme leaves
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 3 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp. pepper
  • 1 pound package penne or mostaccioli pasta

Preparation:

Place the walnuts in a single layer on a cookie sheet. Bake in preheated 350 degrees F oven for 5-10 minutes until nuts are fragrant. Set aside.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil, salt it, and cook the pasta according to package directions.

Meanwhile, combine the bread and buttermilk in a small bowl and set aside for five minutes.

Place 3/4 of the walnuts into a blender with bread soaked in buttermilk, thyme, garlic, and the Parmesan cheese. Process until mixture is smooth. Gradually pour in the olive oil while processing until the mixture is blended and smooth. Season with salt and pepper.

When the pasta is al dente, drain it, reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking liquid. Combine the pureed walnut sauce with the hot pasta, adding as much of the cooking liquid as needed to make a creamy sauce.

Coarsely chop the rest of the toasted walnuts and sprinkle over the pasta. Top with more grated Parmesan cheese.

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