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Vegetable Casarecce Pasta in Pesto | Quick and Easy Meal


Vegetable Casarecce Pasta in Pesto | Quick and Easy Meal

Here is a quick and easy meal which is not only wholesome and hearty but also a very tasty and nutritious meal for everybody. It is a very quick and easy recipe for weeknight meals or lunch box meal.

A must have at anytime of the year, my Kids love this pasta and ask for more, always!








Recipe goes like this:



Ingredients


2 cups - Whole Grain Casarecce or Strozzapreti Pasta (cooked Al Dente, use any preferred pasta of choice)

1 cup - Reserved Pasta Water

2 or 3 - Tomatoes (medium size, chopped)

1 - Carrot (large size, roughly chopped)

1 - Colored Bell Pepper (medium sized of any color, roughly chopped)

1/4 cup - Broccolini

1 cup - Cooked Chickpeas or Garbanzo (drain the chickpea water, if using a can)

1 tbsp - Mixed Herbs (of your choice, I used Basil, Oregano and Thyme)

2 tbsp - Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Salt to taste

1 tsp - Black pepper (freshly ground)

1/2 tsp - Dried red chili flakes, Optional (alter as per your liking)

2 tbsp - Milk, Optional (any milk of your choice, I would prefer almond milk , cow's milk 2% or whole milk)

1 tsp - Garlic (freshly minced, alter according to your liking)



Walnut Basil Pesto


1 cup - Fresh Basil Leaves

2 Nos - Garlic Cloves

1/2 cup - Walnuts

1/4 cup - EVOO Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1/4 cup - Water (optional)

Salt to taste


In a blender or food processor add all the ingredients and blend by adding a bit of olive oil for every 2 pulse. I prefer my pesto a bit grainy, if you like a pasty pesto blend until till it becomes a paste. Add water or more Olive oil if you prefer an oily and runny pesto.


Method

  1. Cook the pasta, according to the instructions on the box. Drain and keep aside. Save some of the pasta water.

  2. In a Saucepan, add olive oil and garlic. On medium heat toast the minced garlic until the raw smell vanishes and a fragrant garlic smell starts to fume, off the pan.

  3. Add a part of the herbs (if unavailable, use dried herbs) and a part of the red chili illi flakes and mix well. Quickly add carrots, bell peppers and broccolini. Wait till all the veggies are partly cooked, add salt to taste, add in the tomatoes and chickpeas and mix well and allow it to cook. Add 1/4 cup pasta water into the pot if the bottom starts to dry up or burn.

  4. Now, add the milk, black pepper, rest of the herbs and allow the sauce to cook a bit.

  5. Add Pasta and Pesto, mix carefully without breaking the pasta. Add the remaining pasta water if the you think the pasta is too dry. Add a drizzle of salt and red chili pepper flakes, only if needed and a tiny drizzle of olive oil to finish. Serve hot and enjoy!

Serves 3-4 people



Note :

  1. Use any type of pasta of choice and cook it as per the instructions provided on its box/case.

  2. For heat, use red chili pepper flakes or paprika powder, or cayenne pepper or any fresh green chili minced.

  3. Use less salt while cooking the sauce or veggies, as you would have already salted the pasta and if you are adding cheese or dried herbs, they might have some salt content which will make the pasta very salty.

  4. If you don’t prefer to add milk add more pasta water.

  5. Also, you may add mayonnaise if you don’t prefer milk.


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