Food + Wine

Avocado Pesto!

Here’s the thing- I know there are plenty of blogs out there with amazing pictures and videos. I’m not dumb – I know mine aren’t great. But you know what? I kinda don’t care. Don’t take that as I don’t care about any of you or I don’t care about sharing great things with you lovely lovelies. But I just don’t care to take hours upon hours out of my day to perfect something that doesn’t matter.  I know a perfectly lit picture of food makes you wanna eat it, I get that. I know an airbrushed face makes you more happy, I understand, but I also know the other side of it- the insider part of it all and I’m here to tell you that all that stuff doesn’t mean the product is any better. It just means that people took a lot of time and money to create an illusion of perfection. But how many times have you all been disappointed after you’ve recreated something you’ve seen in a photograph because what you’ve done looks like a child did it? That’s reality! Things aren’t perfect! I’d rather spend time with my children, sit outside on a pretty day, talk to my friends, read a book…I’d rather make what I’m talking about really, really awesome and authentic and useful instead of trying to prove it to you via photo or video. 

So with that in mind, I’m gonna start posting more videos. Ha. It’s my really late New Years Resolution (if I believed in those things). Y’all have requested more of them and I haven’t delivered because I feared they wouldn’t be good enough for you. I’m now very sorry about that.  I’m also gonna post more pictures and share more things of and about myself. That’s hard for me. But I’m doing it because you think I should. I’m doing it because I’ve been scared before and one should never shy away from something because of fear. Fear will slowly eat you alive. (Unless what you’re fearful of are zombies, in which case you should be very, very full of fear, as those will also eat you alive.) But once I got over the fear of them not being what you may have expected them to be, not being perfect, it became an easier concept for me to grasp. 
 
So here are my rules, my terms, if you will- (because, frankly, I don’t do anything without my own set of rules) I decided that if I’m gonna share a video, I’m gonna do it my way- in the most honest way possible. No fancy editing, no fancy lighting (but God, do I wish now that I had some), no fancy equipment, and no rehearsing or multiple takes. My videos will all be real and unrehearsed, most of the time showing me how I actually look when I’m at home cooking (…ahem, with no makeup), and they will be an insight as to how I come up with my recipes. I want to show you how I work. My kids will most likely always be involved, because that’s just my reality. I’m a stay at home mom who also happens to make and sell food. The angles of the videos will all be quite unflattering (…because I’m balancing my iPhone on the handle of my laundry room door…) but I’m willing to sacrifice a little vanity for you all. 
 
So I hope you like this new side of Everyday Champagne…it may not be perfect, but it’s real.
 
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This pasta sause was inspired by a dish I ate all the time as a child- Pasta Pesto. My mom always grew basil and she would made vats and vats of pesto at the end of the summer to freeze. So all year long we would eat Pasta Pesto for a quick and simple dinner. I love the flavors of Pasta Genovese (basil pesto) but I don’t love the fact that it’s generally made with cups of oil. 
 
So here’s my healthy twist on that classic flavor profile using a couple surprising ingredients!
 
YouTube video link for *’Creamy’ Avocado Basil Pasta Sauce:
 
*’Creamy’ Avocado Basil Pasta Sauce
(Makes about 2 1/2-3 cups of sauce, serves roughly 4 people using 8 ounces of pasta)

In a blender, combine the following:

the flesh of 1 large Haas avocado, (ripe but not mushy-still green and not brown) 
1 cup peas, (if they’re frozen, make sure to thaw them first)
1 cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves
about 1/3 cup or 1- 1 1/2 ounces of real Parmigiano Reggiano cheese (if you don’t have the real stuff, I recommend Pecorino Romano or Asiago- not domestic parm.)
1 lemon, zested and juiced
roughly 1/2 tsp of kosher salt (add small amounts to taste a first because you can always add more)
up to 1 cup of your reserved starchy and salty pasta cooking water (if you’re making this ahead of time and don’t have pasta water, use broth/stock, or just water and adjust the salt if need be)
 
Process everything but the pasta water until completely smooth, and add the water until you reach a saucy consistency. (What I did was add enough water to make it a thick sauce and then reserved the water to add when I was actually heating and serving the dish later.) 
 
Once you’re ready to serve, heat the sauce up in a large skillet, or the pot that you cooked your 8 ounces of pasta in, and get the sauce warm, toss with the cooked noodles and more pasta water if need be, and add in anything else you’d like to round out the meal. I like using leftover chicken and green veggies like asparagus and green beans but remember that you’ve already got veggies in your sauce, and if you use whole grain pasta like I do, you already have a healthy and well rounded meal!

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