Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Pesto and pine nut linguini with cremini mushrooms

This was the vegan option for my husband's birthday dinner. It was super-easy to make, and I didn't use a recipe. I'll give some approximate proportions and I feel confident you can figure it out! First, I purchased some imported pesto concentrate. It was in a tube, strangely enough. It's the only one I could find that was vegan. The other ingredients were simple, easy things to find at our local grocery store.

Linguine pasta, whole wheat blend
pesto concentrate
extra virgin olive oil
cremini mushrooms (baby portobella), cut into thick slices
white or yellow onion, finely diced
2 cloves fresh garlic, peeled, crushed, and diced
2 leaves fresh basil, washed and minced
salt to taste
pine nuts, oven toasted

First, I sauteed the mushrooms and onion in a generous amount of olive oil. Then, I added the pesto sauce and more olive oil. The directions on this product suggested equal amounts of oil and the pesto concentrate. Last, I added the fresh garlic and basil for about the last minute of cooking time. Meanwhile, the pine nuts were toasting in the oven and the pasta was boiling atop the stove. Toss the pasta in the sauce and then garnish with the pine nuts. It turned out very well. And, to be honest, may have been tastier than the lasagna. That's just my opinion, though. I thought the lasagna was a little too rich. So much cheese, alfredo, etc.

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