meatless monday

In case you haven’t heard, we eat too much meat. It’s bad for us, it’s bad for them, it’s bad for the planet. Meatless Monday started in 2003 and to say the least–it’s caught on.  Countless schools, celebrities, and companies are adopting the meat-free Monday.

I try to be cognizant of the amount of meat I consume, but I could absolutely be better.  So, let’s do this together.  I’ll post a meat-free recipe every Monday, something anyone could reasonably prepare on a weeknight, so you can get your act together too (i’m not judging, promise).

So here we go! I made this linguine a week or so ago. I love creative pesto interpretations, and this one worked out wonderfully. Beautiful end-of-season tomatoes and the almonds add a great little bit of bulk to the sauce. This is a great warm, cozy dinner as the weather turns colder, but won’t put you in a food coma or give you a gut. Winner!

Linguine with Tomato-Almond Pesto
from smitten kitchen, adapted from Gourmet

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup slivered almonds
  • 1 large handful fresh basil leaves
  • 1 to 2 large garlic cloves
  • Several sprinkles of sea salt
  • 6 ripe plum tomatoes, quartered
  • 1/2 cup grated Pecorino or Parmesan
  • 1/4 to 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 pound linguine

Method

  • In a large skillet, sauté the almonds in a little olive oil until toasted. Let cool, then blend them in a food processor or blender until they are in coarse pieces. (“The size of orzo,” the original recipe suggests.) Scoop them out of the processor and set them aside.
  • Put the basil, garlic and a few pinches of sea salt into the food processor and chop. Add the almonds back to the food processor (keeping them separate will keep them from getting too finely chopped as you get the basil and garlic to the right texture) with the tomatoes, cheese and olive oil and whirl briefly. Season it with freshly ground black pepper.
  • Cook your linguine until it is al dente and could use another minute of cooking time. Reserve one cup of pasta cooking water and drain the rest. Immediately toss the hot linguine with the pesto and mix quickly so that it drinks the sauce up a bit. Add more pasta water if needed.

p.s. how cute is the little text! yea, you’re thinking “christ that is so 2005.” WHATEVER.

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