Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Pasta with Cauliflower and Pesto

I picked up a big bunch of basil, so I decided to use it to make pesto. I simply placed the pesto, 1/2 cup olive oil, 1 clove garlic and 2 tbsp walnuts in the food processor and processed until smooth. I would have used pine nuts, but I forgot to pick them up at the store. Luckily walnuts work just fine. I used the pesto to compliment a pasta with cauliflower dish I found in Mark Bittman's "How to Cook Everything Vegetarian." A word about this cookbook... I've been using it a lot this month. It is set up really well where there are simple recipes with tons of suggestions for modifications. If you have an ingredient on hand, you can just look it up and find lots of options for dishes that can be made with what you have in the pantry. They aren't the kind of recipes you have to follow strictly, they really help me get creative. Like this pasta dish...I had some uncooked cauliflower that wasn't used in Saturday's gratin so I found a way to incorporate it with pasta and the fresh pesto I made. First, I boiled the cauliflower in water for 5-6 minutes. Then a transferred it to a skillet with a tablespoon of olive oil, a little crushed red pepper and some minced garlic. I cooked and smashed the cauliflower over medium heat while boiling pasta in the leftover cauliflower water. Once the pasta was ready, I combined it with the cauliflower in the skillet with some pesto. I topped the pasta with a little more pesto and a sprinkle of parmesan. I'm excited to have leftovers for lunch tomorrow with a little of the tomato sauce I made on Sunday!


  1. This looks great - what was the pasta to cauliflower ratio? About equal?

  2. Yeah, it was about equal, but you could certainly alter that based on taste. Using the cauliflower in place of pasta makes it healthier, so next time I might even use more cauliflower.