Well it’s 80 degrees (F) here in Virginia today so I think it’s safe to say that it’s officially almost Summer. In fact doesn’t Memorial Day kick off the Summer for most people?
The past few weeks have been heavenly—an extended Spring. Yes it rained a LOT but it kept the cooler weather around and the pollen at a minimum.
The rain has also made our garden grow like crazy + one of the plants that has tripled (at least) in size is our basil plant.
Basil is one of the most fragrant herbs in our garden. One good sniff will send you right back to Italy. And the benefits don’t stop there. Basil is known for its anti-inflammatory properties, boosting immune systems, and even helping us cope with stress. That’s right—it’s Friday so grab a handful of basil leaves and sniff away to relieve some of the stress sticking around from the week. :)
I love making food, but especially at the end of the week I find myself wanting something easier to make. Something I can whip up then relax and eat on the porch (which we have been doing a lot of recently as it has been so GORG outside!)
One of the easiest go-to meals is pasta. There is just so much you can do starting with a box of noodles—or fresh noodles if you’ve got the know-how and time. You can go savory, light, hearty, veggie-packed, meat-packed, baked, tossed, coated, red sauce, white sauce, green sauce, cream sauce…see what I mean?!
Well with that fresh basil calling us from our backyard…pesto it was! I love the freshness of the basil and the sharpness of the garlic. To me pesto isn’t one of those heavier pastas. It’s bright and light, yet filling.
With LeBraun loving creamier pastas we decided to mix it up by adding avocados to the traditional pesto recipe and the result was an indulgent (without being too rich), creamy, fresh dinner! Mmm!
GLUTEN-FREE, VEGAN AVOCADO PESTO
- 2 ripe avocados
- 1 large bunch of fresh basil, striped from stems
- 1/2 cup pine nuts
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tbsp garlic mince
- 2 tsp nutritional yeast (optional)
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Violife Just Like Parmesan Wedge, grated (optional)
- Slice the avocados in half, remove the pit and skin and add to small food processor.
- Add basil leaves, pine nuts, lemon juice, garlic, and nutritional yeast (if applicable). Pulse until finely chopped.
- Add oil and process to form pesto paste.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Add to your favorite cooked pasta and toss to coat.