My goodness. This was super yum. And just what I needed after a stressful day followed by some much needed spin. With the upcoming move I'm trying to get into the "get rid of" mode, as opposed to my usual nightly stops by the fancy market or deli to satisfy an immediate craving (i.e. the warm chickpea salad I'll be posting about soon). And if anyone has ever seen my freezer, it's filled to the gills. Mostly with frozen meats, veggies, and leftover meals to take into work, but there's also a pig head for stock, all variety of nuts, butter, cheese... you name it, it's in my freezer. So between that and my overflowing pantry, plus whatever I'll grab once a week from the market I'm set to start chipping away at my current food stockpiling.
So heading home on the subway, both hungry and exhausted I thought of what I could possibly make that would take less than 30 minutes, be somewhat healthy, but also satisfy my craving for comfort. I had pinned this recipe a few days ago and it came to me on the subway, and once I got home I tweaked it to fit what I had on hand. I also left it hot because... timing mainly. But I'll try the leftovers chilled tomorrow and see how it adds up.
To make it healthier (and vegan... assuming you're using vegan approved pasta too) I used a little olive oil in place of mayo, and lemon in place of lime because that's just what I had. About a quarter cup of pistachio to give it some texture, though I thought almonds, cashews or even pecans would do nicely. Some parsley, a clove or 2 of garlic and a few fresh sprigs of basil really rounded it out. Add to that some salt, and voila. I know the pictures have cheese sprinkled on top but it is absolutely NOT NECESSARY. In fact, forget it. In my waste not, want not attitude I had some leftover picnic cheese from this past weekend I was trying to use up and while I succeeded somewhat in using up my dairy, I didn't notice any difference. And honestly, the avocado makes it so creamy you'd think you were eating some crazy, full-fat, heavy whipped cream laced meal. But no, it's just delicious creamy avocado.
1 ripe avocado
2 cloves garlic
1/4 c. parsley
2 tsp. lemon juice
2-3 sprigs fresh basil leaves
3-4 Tbl. nut of choice- pistachio, almond, cashew, pecan, etc
1/4 c. olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
2 c. whole wheat shell pasta- to make it truely vegan make sure the pasta is made without eggs
1. Set salted water to boil for the pasta. In a food processor add in the first 6 ingredients and blend well. In a slow steady stream, add the oil and continue to blend. Taste for salt and pepper.
2. Cook pasta and drain. While still hot add in the avocado mixture and combine well. Serve hot or chilled.