Avocados were once shunned by the fat and cholesterol conscious,but, in fact have been proven to reduce overall cholesterol levels. Within their creamy goodness is an excellent source of folate and potassium, not to mention thiamine, magnesium and vitamins B6, C ,E and K. Plus they are an antioxidant powerhouse!!!!!
So when I came across this recipe in a Homemakers Magazine I had to give it a try. For one I am attempting to make healthier choices and for another it's pesto folks!!!! Since I have been dubbed by a small handful of readers as the "Pesto Queen" it seems only fitting to shine up my crown in the middle of a sunless Okanagan Canadian winter, get into the kitchen and amp up the vitamin factor. Tree-ripened avocados will never be a reality for me living in The Great White North but if left to ripen for a few days on the counter the store-bought ones will have to do.
Even in the depths of winter I can still find huge bags of basil at my local Choices grocer. Thank goodness for greenhouses in Canada! The addition of avocado to pesto adds a delicious richness and creaminess and lets you reduce the oil, as well as omit the pine nuts. This dish takes as long to prepare as it takes to cook the pasta. Who wouldn't love to have dinner on the table in 10 minutes on a crazy work night!!
I am submitting this dish to Presto Pasta Nights the baby of Ruth at Once Upon a Feast and this week being hosted by Jen of Tastes of Home. You will always find a myriad of delicious dishes from lasagna to Pho on her site.
Pasta is part of a well-balanced diet. Current dietary guidance calls for up to 65% of daily calories to come from carbohydrates.
1) Carbohydrates like pasta provide glucose, the crucial fuel for your brain and muscles.
2) Pasta is an excellent source of complex carbohydrates, which provide a slow release of energy which will get you trough all the kid taxi runs and other daily chores.
3) Pasta is very low in sodium and cholesterol-free.
4) Whole wheat pasta can provide up to 25% of daily fiber requirements in every one cup portion.
Pasta is not the culprit to weight gain it is what you put on top. It’s a fact:...reducing calories, not carbohydrates, helps you lose weight if that is your goal. Even if you are the size you have always wanted to be this dish will boost your vitamin content for the day.
This is a perfect dish for Meatless Mondays and will take less than 10 minutes to devour it all!!!The best 20 minutes of your life well spent!!!!Although I consume a majority of vegetarian meals it has been a while since I posted a recipe for Meatless Mondays. From Canada to Croatia, nations across the globe are taking the pledge and joining the Meatless Monday movement. Going meatfree one day each week is a powerful way for each of us to reduce our ecological footprint and reconnect with foods that are both nutritious and delicious.
**Avocado Pesto Spaghettini**
adapted from Homemakers magazine
12 oz/375 g whole wheat spaghettini
1 large ripe avocado, cubed
3/4 cup/175 mL loosely packed basil leaves
1 clove garlic, smashed
2 tablespoons/30 mL fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon/2 mL salt
pinch black pepper
1/3 cup/75 mL grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup/60 mL extra-virgin olive oil
Generous handful baby spinach
Hot pepper flakes, optional
In boiling salted water, cook pasta until al dente. Reserving 1/4 cup/60 mL cooking liquid, drain.
In food processor, puree avocado, basil, garlic, salt, black pepper and 2 tablespoons/30 mL lemon juice. Add Parmesan cheese. With motor running, drizzle in oil.
Scrape pesto over pasta. Add reserved cooking liquid. Add a generous handul of baby spinach. Mix well.
Serve immediately, with hot pepper flakes, if desired.
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