There’s truly nothing better than coming home to a nice carby bowl of pure love. Problem is, nobody likes the bloat or general feeling of heaviness that inevitably comes after every pasta fest. For years, I’ve been avoiding that feeling by buying pasta made of alternate whole grains, corn or quinoa which not only leave me feeling incredibly light but full of energy too. My basic principle – if it’s a whole carb product with more fibre and protein than sugar- go for it, if it’s not, you’re better off eating a vegetable. This is why the Barilla+ brand is pure genius! all their pastas taste virtually the same as their white counterparts but with a serious boost of healthy Omega-3’s, protein and fibre and very little sugar or added ingredients. Their penne are absolutely incredible and they pick up sauce like a boss’. My favorite way to eat them is with an avocado “pesto” that I make with middle eastern spices, lemon, garlic and basil. It’s absolutely delicious and the perfect creamy foil to the slightly chewy penne. In a way, it almost makes you feel as if you’re eating an alfredo, but without the dairy and unnecessary fats. Spicy, Sweet, limey and oh so filling, this avocado bowl is truly a dish of love.
Ingredients: (for 2, or 3 not-s0-hungry people)
1 avocado, very ripe
1/2 lime, squeezed and zested
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup basil leaves
1 large garlic clove
1/3 cup toasted walnuts (in a dry pan on high heat, removing from pan when walnuts start perfuming the air)
2 tsp sumac
1 tsp paprika
1/2 tbsp chilli flakes (or to taste)
2 cups barilla plus penne (http://www.barilla.com/content/product/plus-penne)
- Heat a large pot of water with a pinch of salt and a tsp of oil (too keep the penne from sticking) on high heat until boiling.
- Add Penne and cook as says on box (12-15 mins usually)
- While Penne cook, make the avocado sauce.
- First, blend your toasted walnuts until very fine
- Add spices and garlic, then your avocado, basil, oil, lime juice and zest
- Pulse until completely smooth and creamy
- When your penne are al dente, drain and set aside
- In a medium serving bowl, toss together penne and sauce, topping with more spices and zest.