Monday, May 26, 2014

Avocado Pesto Pasta

Pesto is one of those foods that just remind me of my childhood.  I remember having pesto quite frequently in the summer time and I could not get enough of the stuff.  That aspect of me has never quite changed and now it seems like pesto is everywhere you go.  I understand though because it is freaking fabulous.  When I started cooking it was one of the first dishes I made and I would really recommend it to any beginners because it is hard to mess it up.  It's also great for a quick weeknight meal when you're short on time! When I went dairy free I pretty much wrote off pesto.  A couple of months back I had a light bulb go off in my head that said avocados!  I mean I use avocados to make creamy dressing so why not for pesto.  The first time I made it I used nuts as well, just like in a normal pesto but I think with the avocado and the nuts it's a little much and not as good.  There is a better flavor without them.  This pesto is nice and creamy and you won't even miss the Parmesan.  I'm quite happy with this one and now can't really stop making it--good thing it's summer (or almost ;)!)  You can use the pesto in pasta like I did or you can use it as a dressing over any meat, fish, veggies, or whatever your heart desires!

A V O C A D O  P E S T O  P A S T A           R E C I P E

pesto sauce
☂ 4 oz. package of basil (which is about 1 cup of basil leaves), remove basil leaves from stems and wash thoroughly 
☂ 1 large avocado (or 1½
  regular sized avocados)
☂ juice of 1 lemon
☂ 1 garlic clove, roughly chopped
☂ 1 tsp. salt
☂ ½ tsp. black pepper
☂ 3 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
☂ 1 Tbsp. water

☂ 1 lb. gluten free spaghetti (I use Barilla and highly recommend it), 
☂ 1 lb. cooked chicken breasts, diced
☂ 1½ cups cherry tomatoes, halved 

☂ Cook pasta according to package directions.
☂ While pasta is cooking place all pesto sauce ingredients into a food processor and blend until smooth.  Taste sauce and adjust seasonings to taste.
☂ Drain pasta and place into a large bowl.  Add in diced cooked chicken and halved tomatoes.  Pour pesto sauce onto the pasta and toss until everything is coated! 
☂ WALAH!  Enjoy and start feeling nourished

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