Almond Pesto and Black Bean Pasta
- Sauce Ingredients: (if you like your dishes saucy, double up on the amounts of the sauce)
- ⅛ cup Nature's Eats Sliced Almonds (optional topping or garnish)
- ½ cup Nature's Eats Almonds
- ⅓ cup olive oil
- 2 cups packed basil
- 3 large garlic cloves
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- salt and pepper to taste
- ⅛ teaspoon red pepper flakes and some red pepper flake for garnish
- 2-3 zucchini and squash
- 4 stalks asparagus
- 1 cup broccoli florets
- 2 garlic cloves chopped
- Pasta Ingredients:
- 1 package of black bean pasta (8-12 ounces)
- 2-3 garlic cloves
If you are an Italian food lover you can still find ways to eat gluten free Italian food. And if you are a pesto fan, you can make this basil almond pesto. Almonds have a great flavor and really make for a fantastic basil pesto or cilantro pesto. Some other nuts you can use to make your pesto are pine nuts, walnuts, or you can get wild and use macadamia nuts.
Boil pasta, following directions on the packaging. Rinse, drain, and then place to the side.
Sauté the vegetables (zucchini, squash, broccoli and asparagus) along with garlic cloves chopped for 1-2 minutes. Place in a bowl to the side.
Excluding the vegetables from step 2, the garnish items, and ½ cup of basil, place all the other sauce ingredients in a high powered blender like a Vitamix machine. Start on the lowest setting and then work your way up to speeds 4-5 until all ingredients achieve a creamy texture. Add in the most of the remaining basil and continue to process on levels 2-3 to leave decent-sized pieces of basil in the pesto sauce.
Returning to the sauce pan with the noodles, add the Almond Pesto Sauce and sautéed vegetables. Toss all items together until well mixed.
Garnish each plate with sliced almonds, red pepper flakes, and a little basil. Serve warm and add a little parmesan or asiago cheese on top (non-vegan option).
Although this is vegan and gluten free, you would never guess it from taste. There is a slight hint of heat from the red crushed peppers and a lightly creamy pesto flavor with bursts of basil and garlic throughout. The pasta has a unique texture and depth without feeling too starchy. Hints of Nature's Eats Sun Dried Tomatoes blend in well with the broccoli, zucchini, squash, and asparagus. This dish tastes perfect as is; however, you may also choose to add some additional protein such as chicken, salmon, or tofu.