Monday, May 26, 2014

Gluten-Free Pea Pesto Pasta

Our Meal Plan Monday is kind of non-existent this week. My husband will be gone for most of the week chaperoning the 8th grade field trip. SO, instead of telling you what we're eating this week (which will mainly just be me and some DiGiorno pizzas), I'm going to tell you about something we've already eaten!

Recently, I've been on a kick to try some new stuff, and I've definitely found some winners. Gluten-Free Pea Pesto Pasta is one of them.

It's kind of a tongue twister, but definitely a tongue pleaser! My husband went back for seconds and ate it for leftovers. You can find the original recipe from Ladies' Home Journal here.

However, this is how I made it gluten-free and more appropriate to our tastes:

- 1 lb. gluten-free pasta (we used rotini)
- salt and pepper
- 10-ounce box of frozen peas, thawed (or just defrost the peas in the microwave)
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan, plus 2 tbsp for sprinkling
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- one package of sweet Italian sausage, casings removed (I used Premio sweet Italian sausage)
- 3 cups of baby spinach

1. Boil the pasta per the package directions.
2. While the pasta boils, place the spinach in the colander. When the pasta is finished boiling, drain it on top of the spinach in the colander. I like this trick to help the spinach wilt. Kill two birds with one stone.
3. In a food processor (I have a 4-cup food processor, but you can use a larger one), combine 1 cup of the peas and the 1/2 cup of Parmesan cheese. If you have a food processor where you can pour in liquid while the motor is on, then turn on your food processor and drizzle in the olive oil. If not, turn on the food processor for a few seconds, turn it off, drizzle in a bit of olive oil, turn on the food processor again, turn it off, drizzle in a bit of olive oil, and repeat all three steps until all the olive oil is gone and the mixture is smooth. Set aside.
4. In a skillet, cook the sausage, crumbling it into pieces, until cooked through.
5. Toss the pasta, sausage, pea pesto, spinach, and remaining peas in a separate serving bowl or the pot in which you cooked the pasta. Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle the remaining Parmesan on top.

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