Have you ever had days when you woke up and craved to gorge into one particular thing? No? Lucky you. But sadly, last Saturday was exactly that kind of a day for me, when I woke up craving for a hearty pesto spaghetti.
I am a person who generally doesn’t order in food. I prefer going out to eat, or eating home cooked food. Looking at the gloomy, wintry weather outside, I promptly dismissed the thought of going out and started ransacking my pantry instead. Well, there was boneless chicken in the freezer and also a brand new box of spaghetti, ready to go wiggly, right in front of my eyes. All that remained now were the things needed for a pesto sauce.
So what are the ingredients in a traditional pesto sauce? A very basic version would contain the following:
- Basil Leaves
- Pine Nuts
- Kosher Salt
- Parmesan Cheese
- Olive oil
Of these 6 things, I could only manage to find some olive oil and garlic in my stock. The other essentials were sadly missing. But I was certainly not in a mood for Aglio Olio 😁, and just couldn’t erase the idea of a warm, nutty pesto from my head.
And that was when I started the game of substitution. The cauliflower leaves took place of the basil, while the robust almonds made up for the lack of pine nuts. The big bag of grated processed cheese came out to oust the parmesan and of course, the table salt pretended to be the new kosher. And thus was born the my Lazy Woman’s Pesto, or maybe a poor man’s Pesto.
- Cauliflower leaves
- Black Pepper
- Processed Cheese (grated)
- Olive Oil
My hand blender is my absolute life-saver. I started with the almonds and crushed them very coarsely. Next I added the cauliflower leaves (the soft portions only and not the stalky veins) and the oil alternatively and blitzed them together on a low speed, and allowing enough time to let the things inside the container emulsify. Lastly, I added the rest of the things, and blended them all together. Care was taken not to turn it into a smooth paste, as I love my pesto a little chunky.
The end product is a new favorite, though I am not exactly sure what to call it😅. It looked strong and glossy, with it’s bright green speckled with bits of cheese and almond.
Soon after my pot of boiling water was up to soften my uptight spaghettis. I sauteed the pesto sauce a bit before adding in the chicken, and them later the pasta strands. And finally my Spaghetti in Pesto Sauce with Chicken was ready.
The pesto sauce coated the silky pasta beautifully. I hurriedly took a few pictures to share here, and tucked into a happy meal!
So what’s your secret sauce?
Happy Chomping, people! 😀