In the Beginning- An Old Favorite with a New Twist
I have a few recipes that are go to standards in my kitchen. Dishes that bring me comfort and pleasure. Dishes I know I can make with my eyes closed. Spaghetti squash with my favorite homemade vegan pesto is one of those dishes.
A little over a year ago, at the urging of a close friend I had eight girlfriends over for a cooking class/dinner party. We hung out in my kitchen, cooked together, chatted and had a great time. At what I now refer to as the first Clean, Pure and Simple Party this dish was the highlight of the menu. Everyone was shocked at how it was much harder to mess up pesto than to make it taste amazing. As long as you have fresh basil you really cannot go wrong. They were also thrilled at how filling this dish is and how it really does satisfy you like a bowl of pasta would!
Last week was a very busy one full of social dinners, Broadway openings, Passover and more. I could not wait until Saturday night when I could stay in and cook dinner for me and Doug to eat in our sweats. Yes, I look forward to staying in on Saturday nights. I never said we were the coolest people in town. In need of some serious comfort food I decided to revisit my old favorite and see if I could add a new twist to it. I came up with a new version of pesto that uses steamed broccoli to add extra flavor and smoothness. I loved the results so much so that on Sunday I made this using my new pesto. Serious yum.
I may just have to have my girlfriends over for another cooking party so they can revisit this dish as well!
Spaghetti Squash with Vegan Broccoli Pesto
- 1 medium spaghetti squash
- 1 cup of broccoli florets
- 3 big handfuls of fresh basil ( about 1 cup)
- juice of 1 lemon
- ½ cup nutritional yeast
- 3 cloves of garlic minced
- sea salt
- black pepper
- Preheat oven to 425
- Pierce skin of squash all over with a fork and place in baking dish
- Bake squash for 45 mins-1 hour or until skin is easily cut with a knife.
- Remove squash from oven, allow to cool.
- When squash is cool enough to handle cut in half lengthwise.
- Remove seeds and discard.
- With a fork scrape flesh of squash away from skin. It should separate and look like spaghetti.
- Place squash “pasta” in pan over medium heat and gently toss with pesto until well coated.
- Top with a little extra nutritional yeast and serve hot!
Vegan Broccoli Pesto
- Steam the broccoli for 5-6 minutes until tender. Drain and pat dry.
- In a food processor combine the steamed broccoli, basil, garlic, lemon juice, nutritional yeast, sea salt and pepper until smooth.
- Adjust seasoning to taste.