Saturday, August 14, 2010

Vegan Review + Recipe: Avocado Pesto Pasta (recipe by Chloe Coscarelli)

New recipes intimidate me.  They really intimidate me if they have more than 5 ingredients that I don't have in my kitchen.  Since I have only been vegan for about 4 1/2 weeks now, I have been even more intimidated trying to cook my own vegan food from scratch and with fresh ingredients.  Most of my time is spent going to Whole Foods and getting something vegan from the deli but that takes a big chunk of change out of the pocket not to mention that it is ludicrous to try to do that for every meal.  AND to top it off I still have to feed my vegetarian husband and my carnivore son.  How can I make everybody happy?

Well I started off by doing the sly (make it look like real ricotta) when I made my first vegan meal - Vegan Lasagna. I didn't tell my husband that I used tofu in place of the ricotta cheese to give it the texture of lasagna .  We have a don't ask don't tell policy when I make food like this one. My husband and my son  loved it! Boy, was I relieved!  My first vegan dish a success! "How did I do it?" I asked myself. "What was I going to do now? What if I set the bar too high with my first vegan dish?"  So I was very nervous when I began my second vegan dish, Avocado Pesto Pasta by Chloe Coscarelli.

I first watched Chloe win Cupcake Wars a few months back.  I was intrigued by this whole vegan cupcake think she was doing.  Now, I was not a vegan yet at this point but I thought "Vegan's eat cupcakes?"  I had already been contemplating the switch from vegetarian to vegan for a little while but seeing her make those cupcakes really sealed the deal for me.  They looked absolutely fabulous!  Why am I telling you about these wonderful cupcakes, you ask? Well because those vegan cupcakes led me to Chloe Coscarelli's website.  I was looking through her blog that had a lot of food recipes (including her winning vegan cupcakes) when I stumbled on the Avocado Pesto Pasta recipe.  I read the ingredients (there was more than five) but it really looked simple and besides everyone in my family loves pasta!  So I began making my second vegan food dish.

The recipe called for a lot of things that I already had in my kitchen except avocados and pine nuts. Now I was a little stressed about this, more than my usual cooking stress, because I knew about avocados (or so I thought).  I knew Guacamole was made out of avocados.  And I knew I hated guacamole. But I was ready.  I was going to give it a try and besides I hadn't tried gauc since I was 14 so maybe it wasn't as bad as I remembered.

The dish itself was pretty easy to make and the sauce for the recipe is raw which is a double bonus. The sauce also included the pine nuts, which I had never eaten (I don't think) and certainly had never bought them.  But let me tell you...WTF?!  $7.00 for a little bag?!  I almost crapped myself at the register since the pine nuts were ever-so-cleverly not priced on the bag.  I sucked it up anyway because they eventually made the dish taste even better than if I hadn't used them.

I test tasted the sauce and it was incredible! And whole wheat linguine tossed with it made it super-incredible! I totally looked at avocados in a brand new light now. I am so glad I tried this dish and my husband liked it even better than my first vegan dish! I have raised the bar even higher!  But it really did taste wonderful.   

This all wouldn't have been possible without Chef Chloe sharing her recipe on her website so she deserves most of the credit.  Here is her website and the recipe below.  Try it out and let me know what you think!

Look at this yummy goodness!

- The Vegan Variety

                                              Chef Chole's recipe and website:

1 comment:

  1. I am doing a cookbook challenge to cook every recipe from Chloe’s Kitchen.
    Hope you don’t mind that I added your post to my blog page under “Others who made it”.