1/4 cup chopped walnuts 3 cloves garlic, minced 2 cups coarsely chopped arugula, stems included 1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh basil 1/2 cup olive oil 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese salt to taste 1 pinch cayenne pepper 1 (16 ounce) package dry pasta
1 Combine the walnuts, garlic, arugula, and cilantro or basil in a food processor or blender. Whirl them just until they are coarsely chopped. While the machine is running, add the olive oil in a thin stream. Transfer the pesto to a bowl. (At this point the pesto can be frozen. Thaw it before proceeding.)
2 Stir the Parmesan cheese, salt, and cayenne into the pesto
3 Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta, and cook it, stirring occasionally, until it is just tender. Drain the pasta, return it to the empty pot, and toss it with the pesto, adding a tablespoon or two of water if necessary to distribute the pesto evenly.
4 Transfer the pasta to a serving bowl or to individual plates, garnish with additional Parmesan cheese and serve.
Makes 4 servings
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