7 Day Catering's Runner Bean Pasta

7 Day Catering provide meals for Sainsbury's staff restaurants and has achieved our Catering Mark for their menus. The Food for Life Catering Mark provides an independent endorsement that food providers are taking steps to improve the food they serve, using fresh ingredients which are free from undesirable additives and GM, and better for animal welfare.

Serves 8


School boy planting runner beansFor the spinach pesto:

  • 500g Organic baby spinach leaves, washed and picked
  • 1 clove of squashed garlic
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 100g walnuts or pinenuts
  • 150g grated parmesan cheese
  • Sea salt, freshly grated nutmeg and black pepper to taste

Other ingredients:

  • Pinch dried chilli flakes
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 500g runner beans
  • 600g penne pasta
  • 75g wild roquette leaf
  • 175g sliced green olives


  1. Blanch the spinach and while still warm, blend to a smooth paste with the garlic, olive oil and walnuts. Stir in the parmesan and a little nutmeg. Correct the seasoning and your pesto is ready.
  2. Meanwhile, peel off the stringy parts of the runner bean, slice to 3cm lengths then blanch in a large pot of boiling salted water. Refresh in cold water and drain well. Cook the pasta according to the instructions before refreshing and draining that too.
  3. When ready to serve, warm the dried chilli and fennel seeds in some olive oil in a large pan. Drop the pasta and runner beans into boiling water for 30 secs to re-heat and add to the fennel and the chilli. Throw in the roquette leaf and the sliced olives and as much of the spinach pesto as is needed to coat the pasta. Season liberally with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper and finish with grated parmesan cheese.

Find out more about 7 Day Catering.



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