Saturday, May 05, 2012

Raw Vegan Cilantro And Pepitas (Pumpkin Seed) Pesto On Gluten-Free Pasta - Perfect For Cinco De Mayo!

Raw Cilantro and Pepitas Pesto on Gluten-Free Pasta!

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A Great Dish for Cinco de Mayo!
Whip up this delicious raw pesto in minutes and either serve it as a dip or stir it into a half pound of hot pasta for a delicious entree. This pesto brings together cilantro, pepitas (pumpkin seeds) and lime, all commonly used in Mexican cuisine. 

Why it's Healthy
There are a few things I did to this recipe to make it healthier than most pesto recipes.
* The pesto is raw and stirred into hot pasta - not cooked.
* I use cilantro which has been found to remove heavy metals like mercury, lead and aluminum, from the body.
* For the nuts, I use raw pepitas (sunflower seeds) that are packed with vitamin E.
* Raw hemp oil is used to add omega-3 fatty acids to balance the high omega-6 content of the pepitas.
* Instead of parmesan cheese, I use vegetarian formula nutritional yeast, packed with critical vitamins.
* I use my very favorite gluten-free pasta made from quinoa.

Cilantro and Pepitas Pesto on Gluten Free Pasta
Pesto: Raw Vegan, Gluten Free
Pasta: Vegan, Gluten Free
Requires a Food Processor with an S blade

1 clove garlic
3 tablespoons raw pepitas (dried pumpkin seeds) plus a few for garnish
1 (4 oz) bunch cilantro, cleaned with stems trimmed
4 teaspoons vegetarian formula nutritional yeast
2 tablespoons cold-pressed hemp oil
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
1/2 teaspoon salt
8 ounces gluten-free pasta (such as Ancient Harvest Quinoa Garden Pagodas)

To make the pesto: With the food processor running, put the clove of garlic through the shoot and process until it is chopped.

Add the pepitas and process until the are coarsely ground.

Coarsely ground pepitas (sunflower seeds)

Place the cilantro on top of the pepitas (save a little for garnish) and then add  the nutritional yeast, hemp oil, lime juice and salt and process until somewhat smooth, scraping down the sides when necessary.

Put the cilantro in first so the other ingredients don't fall directly to the bottom.

Remove the pesto and place it in a small cup or bowl and set aside.

Set aside the pesto and cook the pasta.
Or, serve it as a dip.

Cook the pasta according to directions. 

This GF pasta maintains its texture when cooked "al dente".

Drain the pasta and put it back into the pot while it is still steaming. Spoon on the pesto and stir until the pasta is well coated. 

Spoon cilantro pesto onto the steaming hot pasta.
Stir until well coated.

Serve in 4 bowls and garnish with a few pepitas and chopped cilantro.

Serve with a cold Dos Equis beer and have a Happy Cinco de Mayo!!

Per serving: 315 calories, 11.8 g fat, 1.3 g saturated fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 136 mg omega-3 and 1512 mg omega-6 fatty acids, 8.1 g protein, 50 g carbohydrates, 6 g fiber and 309 mg sodium.

4 comments:

Mazeylime said...

hi there! Thank you for the cooking inspiration. This looks wonderful. Oh, and just as a side note, the pepitas are pumpkin seeds, not sunflower seeds :-) thanks again!

Dr. Joanne L. Mumola Williams said...

Thanks Mazelime,
Fixed it!
Joanne

Alicia Ann said...

Ancient Harvest is my absolute FAVORITE gluten free, high fibre, wheatfree pasta! This is the only one that does not make me bloat. Thumbs up!

Dr. Joanne L. Mumola Williams said...

We love it too!
Joanne