This dish has magical powers. I know what you might be thinking: “How can a pasta dish have powers? There’s no such thing as magic!”
I get it. It’s hard to believe in magic when you haven’t tasted this dish. I understand. I was once a skeptic too. It’s okay. Just hear me out.
JD used to hate all things avocadoes. He would refuse any avocado on a sandwich or in a salad, and he would turn his nose up at guacamole. Guacamole! Imagine my distress as a native Texan who practically sweats guacamole. It was a very sad time in our marriage.
But then one day, I ran into a friend at Walmart and we chatted a bit. You have no idea how common this is in small-town Arkansas, and I fought it my first 2 years there. But then I accepted it as a way of life, and now I kind of miss it in big-city Austin. But I digress.
Anyway, she started telling me of how she got her husband to eat avocadoes by sneaking it into pasta dishes. I was intrigued, yet skeptical. JD is very smart. Surely he would realize what I was trying to do and thwart my plans. But what if it worked? As I laid in bed late at night, I went back and forth. The possibilities! The risks! What could I do?
I was hesitant to try this trickery, but then I thought, “What’s the worst that could happen? JD could end up not liking it and that means more avocado for me. Win-win.” I knew I had to do it soon or my courage would fail.
So one Sunday afternoon as JD was sleeping off a night-shift, I stealthily started mixing some of my favorite ingredients: avocadoes, basil, lemon, garlic, and spinach. I could live on that combination. I seriously have a dopamine reaction when I smell those things together. What could go wrong?
When JD woke up, I urged him to just try it. Just one bite. And he did. Then he had another bite. Before I knew it, he had finished the bowl. And he liked it! After various other CIA-worthy acts with avocadoes (I have this secret dream of being a CIA agent), JD is on the avocado team now. And it all started with that dish. Pure magic.
This meal is one of my very favorite dishes. It takes the amount of time that pasta needs to boil (we’re talking 15 minutes!). It’s packed with nutrition and freshness. It will make your taste buds explode.
It’s also incredibly filling because of the fiber and protein, but I cannot stop myself from getting a second bowl. Every. Time. I always have to change into stretchy pants after eating those two bowls. But all the cells in my body are holding hands and taking those girly jump pictures because they’re so happy.
So take a deep breath and believe in the magic.
Avocado Basil Pasta
3 avocadoes, peeled and pitted
2-3 large leaves of fresh basil
2-3 big handfuls of fresh spinach
Juice of 1 lemon
4 cloves garlic
1/2 c. water
1 tsp. salt
8-10 oz. of cooked brown rice macaroni or shells*
Grape tomatoes, sliced for garnish (optional)
*I use brown rice pasta because it has a lighter taste than whole wheat pasta. I’ve had both with the pasta, and they’re both tasty, but I prefer the brown rice pasta. This kind of pasta can be found in any gluten-free section of your grocery store. Walmart even carries it!
Throw everything in a blender except the pasta and blend on medium until spinach is very small. You may need to stir up the mix a few times to get everything evenly blended.
If the mixture is too lemony, add spinach. If it’s too bitter or bland, add lemon and garlic. If it’s too thick, add a little water. If it’s too liquid-y, add spinach or more avocado. It’s a balancing act and up to your preferences!
Once the pasta is cooked, spoon about 1/4 c. over a bowl of pasta. The warm pasta will heat up the avocado mixture to a perfect temperature. Add sliced tomatoes for garnish.
Because of the lemon, the avocado mixture will stay fresh in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. It won’t brown! 🙂
Leftover pasta is tasty warmed up or cold!
What is your all-time favorite pasta dish?