Spinach Pesto Pasta with Cheese Frankfurters
There is nothing better than homemade pesto and nothing more comforting than cheesy pasta. So why not both?
The spinach base for this pesto gives it more colour and flavour. We used a mix of walnuts and hazelnuts instead of the classic pine nuts. The Greek yoghurt adds a dash of tartness to the flavourful basil and garlic.
The star ingredient, however, is the Emmental cheese-filled Frankfurter which brings the whole dish together. The savouriness and texture of it goes great with any pasta dish, making it a favourite of both children and adults.
For dietary alternatives, you can substitute the Frankfurters with our delicious seitan Vegan Hot Dogs. We also have delicious Halal options made with turkey! Everybody will go in for seconds on this easy to make, mouth-watering dinner! So get the sausages, make the pesto, bake it, and as the saying goes… Pasta e basta!
Makes 8 servings
2 Cheese Frankfurters XXL from The Sausage Man
100 g fresh basil leaves
400 g spinach
3 cloves garlic
70 g chopped nuts
100 g grated parmesan
100 g grated cheddar (optional)
200 ml olive oil
8 tbsp Greek yoghurt
350 g pasta (we recommend fusilli or penne)
200g cherry tomatoes
250 g mozzarella
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
- Defrost the Frankfurters at room temperature
- In a pot, cook the pasta until al dente, then drain of water.
- Meanwhile, make the pesto by chopping the spinach in a food processor. You can work in batches as the spinach leaves are voluminous. Add the basil leaves and mix them thoroughly.
- Add garlic, chopped mixed nuts, grated parmesan, Greek yoghurt, salt, and pepper in the food processor.
- When all the ingredients are combined, add in the olive oil. Process until combined, then set aside.
- Preheat the oven to 200° C.
- Cut the cherry tomatoes in quarters. Cut the cheese-filled Frankfurters in bite size pieces. Try to keep the pieces quite large so there is melted cheese in every bite.
- In a large oven dish, add the tomatoes and Frankfurter pieces.
- Add the pasta and pour half of the pesto over. You can store the remaining pesto in the fridge for later use. Mix well
- Top with mozzarella slices and, optionally, grated cheddar cheese.
- Bake for 10-20 minutes until the mozzarella has melted and got a bit of colour.
- Garnish with additional chopped nuts and parmesan.
- We recommend serving it with one responsible glass of a fruity, sweeter white wine.