MAKES 4 SERVINGS OF SALAD, AND ABOUT 1 CUP OF PESTO
3 medium zucchini or summer squashes, halved lengthwise and then cut crosswise into 1/2 inch half-moons
1 tablespoon olive oil
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
8 ounces penne or rotini pasta
1 1/2 cups cooked navy or Great Northern beans, or 1 can, drained and rinsed
2 1/2 cups loosely packed fresh basil leaves
1 clove garlic, chopped
1/4 cup walnuts
3 tablespoons nutritional yeast
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Arugula, baby spinach, or other tender leafy green; lemon wedges; Cheesy Hemp Seed Topping or vegan parmesan
To make the salad, preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large bowl, toss the zucchini with the oil until evenly coated. Season with salt and pepper and toss again. Spread evenly on the lined baking sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes, until tender and lightly browned.
Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Stir in the pasta, then adjust the heat to maintain a low boil. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the pasta is tender but still firm. Drain well.
Put the pasta, zucchini, and beans in a large bowl and stir gently to combine.
To make the pesto, combine the basil, garlic, walnuts, nutritional yeast, oil, lemon juice, and salt in a food processor and process for 1 minute. Scrape down the sides of the work bowl, season with pepper to taste, then process for 30 seconds, until the pesto has a mostly smooth, even consistency.
Add the pesto to the pasta mixture and stir gently to combine. Serve warm, cool, or at room temperature, scooped over fresh greens, and with your favorite toppings.