A Perfect Pantry

Orecchiette with Creamy Walnut Sauce

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    Ahhh, Winter. I love this time of year. I love it for the warming slow-cooked braises and roasts, the zing of citrus, the feeling of hibernating in cosy warmth.

    Because I love working with seasonally fresh foods, I enjoy winter’s unique ingredients. Right now, you can get local and fresh nuts of every type.

    This recipe is full of flavour but doesn't have the artery-clogging richness that many cream-based sauces have and because it's so filling, you don't need to eat a huge portion to sustain you. In my books, the stodgy rib-sticking food of winter can wait for another day. 


    Orecchiette with Creamy Walnut Sauce

    Serves 4


    • 350g dried orecchiette or other short fat pasta that will hold a thick and chunky sauce
    • 125g fresh walnut halves
    • 2 cups coarsely chopped parsley
    • 4 tbsp fresh or dried breadcrumbs
    • 90g butter, softened
    • ½ cup (125ml) olive oil
    • ¼ cup  (60ml) cream
    • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

    * Nuts turn rancid quickly and sour everything they come into contact with. It's their high oil content that reacts to air that does this. So, buy only what you need for the meal you have in mind and try to buy them from a nut supplier out of a sack rather than a packet off a supermarket shelf.


    1. Put a large stock pot filled with water on to boil.
    2. Place walnuts, parsley and breadcrumbs in the bowl of the X-Blade Pro stick blender and process until finely ground. Add butter and oil and blend to form a thick green paste. Season with salt and pepper, then add cream. Blitz for a few seconds more to combine.
    3. Put the pasta in the pot to cook and cook until it is al dente.
    4. Drain the cooked pasta and return to the pot to keep warm. Toss through the sauce and serve immediately. Save the cheese on top for another pasta meal.


    b2ap3_thumbnail_image005.jpgRecipe created and shared by Sandra Reynolds


    Sandra Reynolds has written over 1000 nutritious budget-friendly recipes for her blog The $120 Food Challenge, surviving unemployment payments and Aldi checkout lines along the way and turned personal adversity into a thriving blog.


    Her first cookbook, The $120 Food Challengeis published by Penguin Viking and Sandra is now writing her second cookbook. She still shops at Aldi every week.


    • Peter 11 August 2014

      I'd love to try this, but doesn't look too friendly for a diabetic :( Are there any modifications you can please suggest to lower the GI?

    • Sandra Reynolds 11 August 2014

      Peter, use a Wholemeal pasta where possible, and if you prefer, don't use cream or butter. Stick to olive oil.

    • Kris 11 August 2014

      I would love a chance to win this blender as it would be so easy to teach my children how to work it and assist with nurturing their love of cooking! What a wonderful meal to make

    • Lina 11 August 2014

      I remember making Orecchiette with Red chilli sauce & Kransky...It was delish! this however, will be my next venture.The creaminess is very appetising and the heart is already panicking..hahha.. thank you for sharing.

    • Elizabeth 11 August 2014

      Delicious. If I won this, I would use it to make up batches of pesto as gifts for Christmas. My current way takes hours!

    • Lucy 11 August 2014

      Oooh, a good blender is the one thing I'm really missing from my kitchen, and what a delicious recipe to showcase it! Thanks!

    • Belinda 11 August 2014

      I would love this blender because it will allow me to make all of my favourite things at home, like hummus and pesto. I have seeds and soil ready to plant basil and coriander for the summer and I can already imagine the amazing herby things I could make with herbs from my garden and this blender!

    • Angela 11 August 2014

      Here in Qld it's summer weather already. If I had the x-blade pro stick blender I'd be making up my own batch of homemade salsa everyday. Fresh tomato, red onion, coriander and lime juice, so yummy!

    • Michelle Harrison 11 August 2014

      I would love this, I would make a creamy macadamia sauce to go with an oven fried chicken breast

    • Christina 11 August 2014

      This looks delicious! If I had the x-blade pro stick blender I would use it to make nut butters, and energy balls etc. My food processor is almost dead, and as I mostly only make small amounts, the pro stick blender would be perfect!

    • Connie 11 August 2014

      Great Recipe, I would love a great stick blender as I don't have one at all and would love to make homemade mayonnaise and pesto and hummus, the list goes on and on.

    • Emily 11 August 2014

      I don't have a blender which is such a pain because I would love to make my own pesto, smoothies, soups etc. Winning this would be a great birthday present too! :)

    • Shannon 11 August 2014

      My small family and small home can't handle big appliances and I have had to get rid of the due to lack of space. This would mean I can actually complete receipes I would LOVE to try as opposed to skipping because I din't have what I need to make them. And my 7 yr old would love to be able to assist with this tool.

    • T.Simm 11 August 2014

      I would love to try these recipes but I!m gluten free tolerance . Do you have any recipes .Thank You.

    • T.Simm 11 August 2014

      I would love to try some recipes but I am gluten free.

    • Jasmine 11 August 2014

      Looks yummy

    • Lara 11 August 2014

      A stick blender would be awesome as it would allow me to make smooth soups and pasta sauces for myself and my partner, among many other things!

    • Angela 11 August 2014

      Sounds delicious - I would love to win one of these so that I can expand my cooking skillset. I have only a very old stick blender which is limiting my cooking somewhat!

    • Kelly 11 August 2014

      I would love a blender in my kitchen like this. Would certainly make cooking a breeze. This recipe looks delicious also :)

    • Kelly 11 August 2014

      A blender like this would be a fantastic addition to my kitchen. So much easier for chopping, dicing, slicing, pureeing etc.
      Recipe looks gorgeous.

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