31 Days of Frugal Paleo | Creamy Paleo Pesto Pasta

October 8, 2013

This recipe is a favorite, it's filling, Jeremy liked it, and he also had no idea it wasn't dairy. 

This recipe alone made me think I needed to buy Against All Grain's new book, and I'm asking Santa Clause for it. 

To make this recipe cheaper I changed a few things, it would be divine though the way it is. My changes are in pink:)

4 medium zucchini, peeled and sliced into thin noodles (spaghetti squash)
1 cup asparagus pieces (zucchini is great here, or any other cheaper veggie)
2 tablespoons virgin olive oil
8 ounces crimini mushrooms, roughly chopped (regular button mushrooms)
2 ounces prosciutto (omit for vegan and add ¼ teaspoon salt) (bacon)
½ cup frozen peas (omit if you’d like for Paleo)
½ cup cherry tomatoes, cut in half (can of diced tomatoes)
1 cup raw cashews
4 cups boiling water
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 garlic clove
2 tablespoons chopped basil (I just tossed in a few tbsp of jarred pesto)
¼ teaspoon salt
dash of white pepper
dash of nutmeg (left it out, I don't personally like it)
Garnish with toasted pine nuts and fresh basil (left it off)

  1. Boil the 4 cups water, then pour it over the cashews. Soak them in the boiling water for 30 minutes.
  2. Bring another large pot of water to a boil, then add the zucchini noodles and blanch quickly for 1-2 minutes. Remove the noodles with a slotted spoon and place in a colander. Immediately run cold water over them then turn them out onto a baking sheet lined with paper towels. Set off to the side until your sauce is done.
  3. Add the asparagus to the same pot of water and cook for about 3 minutes until tender but still crisp. Drain the water and set the asparagus off to the side.
  4. Sauté the prosciutto and mushrooms in the olive oil for 5 minutes over medium heat. Reduce heat to low while you make the sauce.
  5. Drain the cashews, but reserve the soaking water. Blend the cashews with 1 cup of the soaking water in a blender. Add the lemon juice, nutmeg, basil, salt, pepper, and garlic and blend to a smooth sauce.
  6. Add the sauce, asparagus, and the peas to the mushrooms and prosciutto and simmer for 7-10 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes and remove from heat. If your sauce is a little too thick, add a bit of the cashew water to help thin it out.
  7. Serve the sauce over the zucchini noodles garnished with toasted pine nuts and fresh basil.
  8. The pasta will keep in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Some water will gather at the bottom of your container because of the zucchini. You can drain it before heating, or simply stir it into the sauce to help thin it as it thickens when chilled.

For the spaghetti squash - my favorite way to cook it is to stab it several times with a good knife and then microwave it for 12 minutes. Super easy!

If you haven't read the Against All Grain blog before you definitely should, she has a ton of great recipes and every single one I've made has tasted amazing.

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