Friday, 24 May 2019
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Pasta Salad with Creamy Lemon Avo Pesto

Pasta Salad with Creamy Lemon Avo Pesto

Can you believe that I spent the first 24 years of my life thinking that I hated avocado?!  Crazy, right?!  Luckily, one fateful night at dinner I ordered an entree that didn’t mention it contained avocado and I was too hungry to send it back so I buckled down and ate it – and thus began my love of avocado.  Living in California there is always an abundance of avocados and I’m always looking for fun new ways to add them to my favorite dishes.  I’ve been craving pasta salad lately and the thought of a creamy pesto sauce sounded perfect.  This pesto is hands down the tastiest I’ve ever had.  I love how the lemon and miso add a salty and slightly tart flavor to the creamy avocado and walnuts.  I only wish I had made a double batch because there were no leftovers after my family and I had this for lunch.  Don’t say I didn’t warn you!

Can you believe that I spent the first 24 years of my life thinking that I hated avocado?!  Crazy, right?!  Luckily, one fateful night at dinner I ordered an entree that didn’t mention it contained avocado and I was too hungry to send it back so I buckled down and ate it – and thus began my love of avocado.  Living in California there is always an abundance of avocados and I’m always looking for fun new ways to add them to my favorite dishes.  I’ve been craving pasta salad lately and the thought of a creamy pesto sauce sounded perfect.  This pesto is hands down the tastiest I’ve ever had.  I love how the lemon and miso add a salty and slightly tart flavor to the creamy avocado and walnuts.  I only wish I had made a double batch because there were no leftovers after my family and I had this for lunch.  Don’t say I didn’t warn you!

Sarah

Ingredients:

For the Creamy Lemon Avo Pesto:

  • 1/2 cup raw walnuts
  • 1 small avocado
  • 1-2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • large handful of spinach (about a cup)
  • 3 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp chickpea miso (a sweet white miso would also work well)
  • 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt or to taste
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

For the Pasta Salad:

  • 10-12 ounces pasta of your choice
  • 2 cups broccoli florets
  • 1/4 cup diced red bell pepper
  • 1/3 cup diced red onion
  • 2 carrots, chopped or diced
  • 2 ounces sliced black olives (optional)

Preparation:

  1. Prepare the pasta according to the directions on the package.
  2. While the pasta is cooking add all the ingredients for the pesto sauce, except the olive oil, to a food process or blender.  Process for a few seconds until a chunky sauce forms.
  3. While the machine is still running, slowly add in the olive oil until you have a smooth, creamy sauce.
  4. Once the pasta is cooked, drain and add to a large bowl.  Add the broccoli, pepper, onion, carrots and olives if using.  Stir well.
  5. Pour the pesto sauce over the pasta salad and stir well until throughly mixed.  Place the salad in the fridge until chilled and serve immediately.

Yield:

Makes 4-6 servings.

Notes:

Leftover salad can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.  This salad makes for amazing leftovers and is a great dish to have on hand for a quick and healthy lunch.

The pesto sauce is very versatile and can be used as a spread on a piece of toasted bread, a topping for a baked potato or as a veggie dip.  It also makes a terrific pizza sauce!

Summary
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Recipe Name
Pasta Salad with Creamy Lemon Avo Pesto
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