Saturday, November 19, 2011

Raw Pasta Two Ways

 Pictures1

 “The way you cut your meat reflects the way you live.”
–Confucius

“The way you cut your veggies reflects the way you live.” 
— Me, earlier today
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I love vegetables, but like most things I get b.o.r.e.d very easily.  So cutting veggies up like pasta is nothing new friends, but what I have dressed them with today, well, hello gorgeous (yes you) and what I am tasting in my mouth.  I’ve been making pesto for years and this is my favorite recipe but I find it gets a bit washed out on pasta, so I added one simple ingredient and bam – love! The perfect raw pesto.  I adore pesto in any form.  It brings back lovely memories of my beloved Gramie (who was a die-hard cook).  Growing up I spent the summers with my Grandparents (and lived with them for many years).  Gramie often made fresh pesto and I vividly remember her explaining what it was and how to make it with nothing less than grand enthusiasm over the entire process from leaves to paste. Of course I thought it was awesome, and she allowed me to do the best part of the job…drizzling in the oil.  Magic.  If my Gramie was alive today I know she would LOVE my heart-healthy version.  This one’s for you Gramie! 
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Sauce #1: The Perfect Raw Pesto
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • 2 ounces of fresh basil (sort of hard to measure in cups, probably 4 cups)
  • 1 cup raw organic walnuts (you could also toast the walnuts, but do not if making raw)
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons fresh lemon (to taste)
  • ½ cup olive oil (or preferred oil)
  • ½ teaspoon garlic granules (or one clove of fresh garlic – or to taste)
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 large ripe avocado
Instructions
  1. Place toasted walnuts in food processor and pulse a few times.
  2. Add basil, garlic granules, salt and pulse.
  3. Add the avocado and pulse until incorporated.
  4. Test for seasoning.
Notes
This sauce also works great with cooked gluten-free pasta (this is how I tested it originally)
Pesto is best served at room temperature (in my opinion)

 

The first time I ate at Cafe Gratitude I fell in love; I was smitten like a lovesick teenager, seriously!  Check out their website and I dare you to not feel warm, fuzzy, loved, and excited about their philosophy and their food – my goddess the food!  I’m sure I scared the poor man sitting next to me as I moaned, groaned, and talked to myself through the entire meal (who does that? oh, crazy people like me – okay, I was having a foodgasm if you must know).  I was still chewing my first bite when I spotted their cookbook, ran to it, grabbed it, and proceeded to hold onto it (while I ate) like a miserly mouse clenching the last piece of cheese.  So if you are headed to San Francisco for a visit, call me and I will meet you there and we can be crazy about this place together!
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Sauce #2: Fabulous Fig Balsamic Dressing
 
This is a sweet/savory sauce from one of my favorite restaurants on the planet, Cafe Gratitude. The fig sauce is located on page 45. It's fantastic. I adapted it slightly with what I had on hand, so the original recipe is different.
Author:
Ingredients
  • 7 black mission figs, quartered
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • Juice from ½ a lemon
  • A few turns of the pepper grinder
  • Walnut oil
Instructions
  1. Add figs, balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper, and lemon to food processor, blend until Incorporated
  2. Drizzle in oil until creamy
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Posted by Amber at

Labels: raw, sauces, sides, vegan.

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