However, yesterday's dinner saw a return to plan (albeit a meal planned for Wednesday lunchtime) with Avocado Pesto and New Potato Pasta.
Seriously, seriously good! I've not been impressed with the commercial vegan pesto I've found so far, but this one was so good that my husband thought there was cheese in it! My version has grown from recipes by a new discovery - Chloe Cascarelli (chefchloe) - and an old favourite - Hugh Fernley-Whittingstall. It's a very flexible recipe with several possible substitutions, which I've listed below. The avocado makes the pesto incredibly creamy and I defy anyone to miss the cheese!
Serves 2 generously (or 2 and a toddler)
1 avocado (riper the better), pitted and peeled
1/4 cup walnuts
Large bunch of basil (leaves only, about 25g)
Small bunch parsley (leaves only, about 10g)
Generous squeeze lemon juice
1 clove garlic, chopped & squashed
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt & freshly ground black pepper
Put avocado, walnuts, herbs, lemon and garlic in a food processor and process until smooth. With the processor still running, slowly pour in the oil until the mix is thick and sloppy. Season with salt and pepper. That's it!
- You can use the more traditional pine nuts in the same quantity, and you can toast them gently in a pan if you like for a deeper flavour.
- You can use different combinations of herbs, coriander is also good, and add some mint for a different flavour.
- If you like more garlic, put more in!
- Feel free to use regular olive oil if you prefer or are on a budget.
Because of the avocado, this is a recipe to make and use on the day.
For our meal, we cooked up 160g pasta to 140g new potatoes (cut into chip size slices), lightly pan fried some courgettes and fresh peas (green beans are also are a great summery veg to use) and just combined everything with the pesto at the end. Gorgeous!