So I’m not becoming a vegan but dabbling in the movement couldn’t hurt, right?
I started in December and found a few staple dishes that I love but many of the vegetarian meals I was finding online included milk or cheese.
Total buzz kill.
I know you’re probably thinking “Just leave the dairy out.” But it seemed dairy was the yum factor in so many of these meals and they just wouldn’t taste the same without it!
I’m technically not supposed to eat cheese at all (doctor’s orders) but I absolutely love it so instead, I give myself permission to eat it on “special occasions” or when a friend is cooking me a meal.
But for my everyday eating, I skip the dairy.
So with no dairy and no meat I figured I might as well start researching vegan meals to see what I could find. I had to pick the right kind of meal that would also satisfy the husband who isn’t too keen on things like eggplant and butternut squash.
I found the perfect meal last night.
Check out this vegan, gluten-free creamy pesto pasta recipe from Vegan Chef Chloe Cascorelli as published in Self Magazine. It is absolutely to die for and healthy to boot!
I would venture to say it tastes richer than the heavy cream- and butter-filled pesto. Seriously, it’s insane!
It’s packed with anti-inflammatory basil and healthy mono-unsaturated fats from the avocado and pinenuts.
Two ripe avocados
A handful of organic basil leaves
1/2 cup pine nuts
1/2 cup olive oil
2 cloves garlic (I used three because I LOVE garlic)
The juice from half a lemon.
1 bag of brown rice pasta
Crushed red pepper (optional)
Put all the sauce ingredients into a food processor and blend until smooth. Season with sea salt and pepper.
Cook the pasta according to the directions.
Toss the pasta with the pesto in a sauce pan over very low heat.
I added crushed red pepper for an extra kick and served it alongside oven-roasted asparagus and tomatoes. I think this dish would taste great with tomatoes and sauteed mushroom tossed in.