Pasta (I used trottole)
1 bunch of dino kale (weight: 1/2 lb.), destemmed and loosely chopped
1 garlic clove
1/3 cup pistachios, unsalted and deshelled and unsalted
1 small lemon
1/3 cup Parmesan-Reggiano finely grated
Pinch of red pepper flakes
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup reserved pasta water
1. Bring a heavily salted medium pot of water to a boil. Add the kale, being sure to submerge it in the water, and blanch for 2-4 minutes. Using a large slotted spoon (some other hand-strainer of some sort or even a tablespoon would work too), transfer the kale to a colander. Allow to cool slightly and then transfer to a bed of a few paper towels and dry thoroughly. (And hey! if you have one of those salad spinner things, by all means use it in place of the paper towel situation.)
2. To a small saucepan, add the pistachios and toast over medium-low heat for 2 minutes, tossing the pistachios every 30 seconds or so to ensure an even toast.
3. To the food processor, add the garlic and toasted pistachios; pulse until the mixture resembles a coarse meal. Add the blanched kale and juice from your lemon. Pulse again until the kale is broken up and nearly smooth. Using a spatula, scrape down the sides. Throw in the Parmesan-Reggiano and pinch of red pepper flakes. Pulse again and while the food processor is running, slowly drizzle in the olive oil. Salt to taste (I added about 1/2 teaspoon, plus 2 pinches of salt).
3. If you're not going to use right away, transfer to a bowl, top with a teaspoon of olive oil and cover with plastic wrap. This will be good in the fridge for up to 3 days (maybe even 5 days, but you might be pushing it).
4. Add the pasta to the salted boiling water (previously used for the kale) and cook until al dente. Drain the pasta, reserving about 1/2 cup of pasta water. Add the drained pasta back to the pot and add a few tablespoons of pesto. Toss, adding a few splashes of pasta water until it reaches your desired consistency. Top with some shavings of Parmesan-Reggiano.
Yields 1 cup pesto