Grown up Mac & Cheese & Veggies

I had been craving pasta: pasta salad, carbonara, penne alla vodka... and then I saw this recipe which reminded me of the broccoli in the fridge.  You can customize each bowl to suit which is good because we like different cheeses. And this is very easy since it all cooks together.

Bring large pot of water up to boil.

Meanwhile, clean and cut vegetables:
broccoli heads & stalks into chunks
any broccoli leaves, or kale or spinach- cut into ribbons
dice red bell pepper

Once water is boiling, add 1 TB salt.  Add whole wheat pasta.  For the last 5 minutes of cooking time, add the broccoli. For tender vegetables like leaves and the bell peppers, add at last minute of cooking.

Strain off hot water, reserving a little bit in case you need to moisten the noodles.

Toss hot drained pasta with:
pesto (I freeze mine in ice cube trays, so thaw first)
chopped parsley
cheese (cheddar for hubby and blue cheese crumbles for me)

Moisten with a little hot pasta cooking water. Toss and eat immediately.

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