For the pesto:
- 1 cup fresh basil
- ½ ripe avocado
- 1 garlic
- ¼ cup walnuts (or pine nuts)
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- Salt and pepper, to taste
For the pasta salad:
- 4 cups (8 oz.) bowtie (farfalle) pasta
- 1½ cup cherry tomatoes halved
- 1 bunch asparagus, cut into 2-inch pieces
- 8 oz string beans, cut into 2-inch pieces
- 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
- ½ ripe avocado, chopped
- ¾ cup red onions, diced
- tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 cup mozzarella
Avocado - pesto pasta salad
"You will love this recipe because is so adaptable and scalable such that you can make more or less and with the vegetables you have on hand that you simply think will go well in this pasta salad. Basically, it’s an excellent tasty vegetarian dish (remove the cheese and it’s vegan) that's good for a summer picnic or maybe as a filling meal! Leftovers the next day are amazing!"
Cooking time: 35 minutes Sevres: 4
Step 1: In the large saucepan add water and salt and bring to a boil. Cook pasta according to package directions till al dente. Drain pasta and rinse with cold water till cool.
Step 2: As the pasta is cooking, heat oven to 400⁰F and prepare the vegetables. First of all, you must toss the shredded asparagus, then add string beans, and cherry tomatoes, add more olive oil, season with salt and black pepper. Spread out onto one or two parchment paper-lined baking sheets. Roast for 15-20 minutes or till tender and starting to brown/shrivel.
Step 3: Using a food processor or blender, add the avocado, basil, garlic, walnuts, olive oil, juice, and a pinch of salt. Pulse many times allowing the ingredients to break down into a homogenous sauce (you may need to scrape down the sides with a spatula), adding olive oil if required to thin. Taste and season with salt, if needed. Set aside.
Step 4: Prepare a large bowl to add the cooked pasta and then toss well with the pesto. Add the balsamic, mozzarella, basil and gently toss to mix. Season with sea salt and freshly chopped pepper to taste.
Step 5: Once the roast vegetable is ready to add to the pesto and pasta. Add shredded avocado and onion, and toss everything together to mix. Add olive oil and Parmesan cheese. Serve cold or at room temperature. Enjoy!