I’ve been on a bit of a pesto kick lately. Probably because my basil is growing like crazy in my garden. I planted four basil plants this year, and they are all doing well, but I have this one purple basil plant that outgrowing the “plant” status, and more looking like a bush. Which is awesome, because now I have an abundance of basil to make different types of pestos with!
We’ve had a bit of a heat-spell in the last week, and my house does not have air conditioning. So when it’s super hot, the last thing I want to do is turn on my stove to cook and heat the house up more. Which is why I’m thankful for the barbecue! Keeps all the heat outside.
If you want to make this recipe, but don’t have any fresh pesto on hand, store bought pesto will work just as good.
To make this pesto, I used the following ingredients:
- fresh basil (about 2 cups)
- 3 tablespoons walnuts
- juice of one lemon
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
- 1/2 cup asiago cheese
- 1/2 cup olive oil
I will say these are approximate measurements, because I whipped it up super fast, and eyeballed most of it. But pesto is very easy to make, slowly add ingredients as you go, and taste-test along the way until you’re happy with the consistency and taste.
This meal is super quick to whip up if you’re short on time. From start to finish, it took me a total of 25 minutes. The vegetables can be grilled at the same time as the chorizo, and the pasta cooks while they are on the grill.
These are the spiral noodles I used for the recipe, but really, any noodles will work. Rotini or bowties would be great in this dish. I buy these noodles at a local specialty grocery store, and I love them for many reasons. One, they are gluten-free, which means Ashley-friendly. Two, they are made with white beans, which is extra fiber and protein. And the number one reason: they cook in 3 minutes!!!! YAY for fast cooking when you’re in a hurry on a weeknight.
Once the BBQ was fired up, I grilled up two chorizo sausages (Italian would work great too) and popped my summer vegetables in the grill bowl. I used zucchini, red peppers and cherry tomatoes. This dish is so versatile, you could literally use anything you have on hand.
If you follow my posts regularly, I’m sure you’ve noticed I’m not a huge meat-eater. I’ve really made an effort to reduce my consumption for a few reasons. One, I feel bad for the poor animals. Two, it’s easier on my digestive system to eat vegetarian, and three, I don’t enjoy the taste of a lot of meats. But I do like chicken and some pork.
I get my sausage from my local butcher. They’re so delicious, made fresh, organic, and I know where the animal was raised and how it was treated. Which is a big plus in my books. I can’t remember the last time I purchased meat from a grocery store. I live in the country, so I always see those huge steel transport trucks going by, to pick up the animals and it honestly breaks my heart. I also really don’t like the thought of not knowing where the meat comes from, how the animals live and are treated on these farms, as well as what they are injected with in regards to hormones, chemicals, antibiotics etc.
Anyway, on a happier note, the pasta dish!
Once the sausages were done cooking on the BBQ, I let them rest, and fired up a frying pan on medium heat. Once the pan was heated, I added the cooked noodles, and the pesto and tossed it together. Once that was heated through, I added the sliced sausages and grilled veggies. Fry it for a few minutes longer, just to reheat the sausage and veggies, then pull it off the heat and serve.
I should look something like that ^ when it’s done… in other words, delicious 🙂 my mouth is watering right now. Maybe this will be dinner again tonight.
I couldn’t resist adding one more picture.
I love this pasta combination. The Chorizo has a bit of a kick, the pesto is garlicky and creamy, and the vegetables are nice and light and crunchy.
When you’re ready to serve, grated fresh parmesan cheese, and fresh chopped basil are a great garnish.
And voila! You have a complete meal in less than 30 minutes. Which is awesome on a busy weeknight (or for when you’re super hangry). And, this is also great for leftovers the next day, because then I don’t have to worry about lunch for Mr. FIL.
Happy Eating 🙂
Pesto Pasta with Chorizo and Grilled Vegetables
A nice, light summer pasta dish. With freshly grilled veggies, and some spicy Chorizo. This dish is quick, easy, healthy and absolutely delicious!
- 1/2 cup pesto
- 1 1/4 cups dry pasta (such as rotini or bowties)
- 1 med zucchini sliced
- 1 handful cherry tomatoes
- 1/2 red pepper sliced in 1 inch cubes
- 2 Chorizo sausages
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 1/8 tsp pepper
Heat the BBQ to medium high heat. Place your grilling bowl on the BBQ, and let it heat up as the BBQ is heating up.
In a large bowl, add the zucchini, red pepper, and cherry tomatoes. Toss them in olive oil, salt and pepper.
Toss the veggies into the grill bowl, and place the Chorizo sausages on the grill. Cook for 12-15 minutes, until the veggies are nicely browned, and the Chorizo is juicy, and cooked through. Remove from grill and let the Chorizo rest.
Cook pasta noodles according to directions on the package.
Place a pan on the stove on medium heat. Add the noodles and pesto to the pan and toss until nicely combined. Add the chorizo and grilled vegetables. Cook for another 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat and serve.
Serve with some freshly grated parmesan cheese and fresh basil.