Delicious and yummy Pasta with Spicy Sun Dried Tomato Pesto comes together in less than 30 minutes! A complete comfort food that is gluten free and vegan!
Summer is in full swing and what a great time to have a picnic with family and friends! When you think of picnic, the first thing that comes to mind is all the delicious picnic foods. For our recent picnic, we decided on many yummy delicacies like grilled corn and veggies, kebabs, aloo tikki with chutneys, dip and chips, sandwiches, fresh fruits, flavored water, gobi manchurian, pakodas with buns, and khaman dhokla. Pasta with Spicy Sun Dried Tomato Pesto
But kids didn’t seem too happy with our choices. They were okay with fresh fruits, dip and chips, but about pasta? Yes, we did miss pasta. I started wondering why doesn’t pasta makes it to the list when we chalk down our picnic menu?
Reasons – maybe, because its not a finger food and secondly, it gets cold making it difficult to eat. This is when I decided to make a pasta recipe for our picnic that is easy to cook and could be eaten hot or cold!
What could be better than a homemade pasta with spicy sun dried tomato pesto? Made with fresh and simple ingredients, this vegan pesto pasta is full of flavor and can be put together in minutes- with store bought sundried tomatoes!
Now on to the recipe!
Before I advance to the main recipe, I would like to talk a bit about fresh pesto sauce. I love to create most of my meals from scratch and for this recipe I have used homemade sun-dried tomatoes. But if you find it a bit too much work, substitute store bought sun-dried tomatoes for the homemade ones. Sun-dried tomatoes packed in olive oil is perfect for pesto.
Just toss the tomato infused with olive oil in a blender/food processor along with other ingredients. Use fresh basil for this sauce as it adds an amazing aroma and flavor to the sauce. Other options would be to add pine-nuts or walnuts to the sauce for a nice texture.
Pulse until well blended. You will end up with a thick paste. Measure 3/4 cup of pesto, dilute it with enough water/oil to make a thick, smooth consistency and use it for the pasta.
To save time, substitute store bought sun-dried red pesto with the fresh one. A very versatile sauce that goes with almost any kind of pasta, spread it over sandwiches, use it on grilled chicken and pizzas- – the possibilities are endless.
Assembly was easy. Boil pasta, drain and add some sauteed veggies of your choice. Pour in the sauce, drizzle some olive oil and adjust seasonings. Jazz it up with a handful of chopped green onions and you are all set.
I have used curly pasta because it holds the pesto sauce pretty well in its small crevices making it extra soft and juicy. But feel free to play around with different pasta shapes.
Packed my pasta in a warmer and I am heading out to a great outing with family and friends! It is a beautiful location – sandy beach on the lake + a warm summer sun = a perfect day for picnic!!
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Pasta with Spicy Sun Dried Tomato Pesto
FOR SUNDRIED TOMATO PESTO
- 1 cup Sundried tomatoes (or use store bought)
- 2-3 cloves of Garlic
- 3/4 cup Fresh Basil
- 1/4 cup Olive oil
- 5-6 pieces of Black olives (optional)
- 1 teaspoon Coarsely crushed black peppercorns (adjust according to taste)
- 1 teaspoon Crushed red chili flakes (adjust according to taste)
- Salt to taste
- 1 package Gluten free Pasta
- 3/4 cup Sundried tomato pesto (recipe mentioned below)
- 2-3 tablespoon Olive oil
- 2-3 tablespoon Chopped Green Onions
- 1/2 cup Sliced Mushrooms (optional)
- A handful of Fresh Baby Spinach leaves (optional)
- Few leaves of Fresh basil for garnish
- Salt to taste
HOMEMADE SUN DRIED TOMATO SAUCE
- Let's begin by preparing sun-dried tomato pesto at home.
- Fresh basil.
- Toss everything in a food processor/blender and pulse until well blended.
- Measure 3/4 cup of pesto, dilute it with enough water/oil to make a thick, smooth consistency for the pasta. Given measurements makes a little over 1 cup.
- I have used gluten-free pasta for this recipe. Feel free to play around with different pasta shapes.
- Boil pasta as per package instructions.
- Drain and transfer it to a large pan.
- Feel free to add some sauteed veggies of your choice. Pour in the sauce, drizzle some olive oil and adjust seasonings.
- Jazz it up with a handful of chopped green onions and you are all set.
- If you are not vegan, sprinkle your favorite cheese on top and enjoy!