I love pesto. And I love avocados. This dish combines these two loves into a flavorful and fresh pasta salad!
I’m a proponent of creative cooking, and using ingredients you have on hand to create delicious meals. Its a survival skill that comes in handy when you are a busy mom just trying to feed hungry mouths. My daughter’s school was having a family luncheon pot luck, and I had signed up for some type of pasta salad. I am known to try new recipes for the first time on large groups. Brave I know, but it hasn’t back-fired so far. I knew I wanted to make pesto, but I never make it the traditional way (you may have read in my other posts about my husband’s deathly nut allergy). So I don’t use nuts and I usually improvise. So here I had tons of parsley, avocados, and perfectly juicy and plump cherry tomatoes.
Oh that avocado can whip into a beautiful green “butter” for my pasta salad! Who needs nuts? (omega-3 fats, CHECK)
Lulu do you want to pick some parsley leaves from the garden!?
My daughter nods enthusiastically.
And so it was created: avocado- pesto pasta salad. No nuts, but plenty of kick from garlic and earthy parsley, the creaminess of the avocado, and a tad of lemon juice and we were set for a delicious meal in no time! We used bow tie pasta because, well, they are my daughter’s favorite. What 3 year old girl wouldn’t love to eat bow ties?! Anything to make eating appealing and fun for kids, right?
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Lemon or lime juice is absolutely necessary here to keep the avocado’s vibrant green color. Some salt, pepper, and crushed garlic season the “pesto” perfectly, and the fresh parsley leaves give this sauce the perfect texture and earthiness to replace the traditional basil. At the end I add sliced cherry tomatoes and I sprinkle on some freshly grated parmesan cheese. YUM.
This thick, creamy sauce is a simple combination of blended avocados, lemon juice, salt, pepper, crushed garlic, olive oil, and parsley.
- 1 lb pasta (bowties, penne, fusili)
- 2 ripe avocados
- 1 lemon or lime, juiced
- salt and pepper to taste (about 1 tsp)
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 bunch of parsley (about 1/2 cup chopped)
- 1 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
- Cook the pasta in boiling water with some olive oil, according to directions, until "al dente"(about 8 minutes). Drain and set aside to cool in a large mixing bowl.
- Slice the avocado open, remove the pit and scoop out the flesh. Put it into a food processor or blender. Add the salt, pepper, lemon juice, garlic cloves, parsley, and olive oil. Blend until smooth and creamy.
- Pour the sauce over the cooled pasta. Add the cherry tomatoes and toss in the grated cheese.
- Place in a serving dish, and enjoy!