This is so simple and so good.
And yes, it really does only take 15 minutes.
Which I feel like is kind of fit for this Monday since I know a lot of you guys have kids that start school today. Which inevitably means complete chaos.
Well, at least that was what is was like when I was in school. Granted my parents had six others kids to feed, cloth, bath (yeah right) and yell at every other second. I mean basically our house was always chaotic, but the the first week of school was the worst.
We’d be running around Marc’s, the cheapest grocery store in the Cleveland area. Seriously, the place is cheap, dirty and amazing all at the same time. They have the best prices and from what I remember the best produce. It was always so good.
I HATED and loved Marc’s all at the same time. It’s an odd feeling.
Anyway, we would be running around trying to get everything on our school supply list (that we of course did not get before school actually started) while also trying to get groceries for the week.
That is the way my mom did things. Last minute and total chaos.
Truthfully, I know that is the way she likes it. She thrives on chaos.
We would finally get home, and it would be like six or seven by now, no homework started, no lunches made, no backpacks organized, no clean kids. And dinner?
Yeah, that was definitely not started yet.
This is when the chicken and rice would come in.
We all liked it though, so there was never any complaining.
Finally at age fourteen I decided I would start helping my parents and by making the dinners.
Who am I kidding, I totally started cooking for me. I hated the chaos with a passion.
And when I am uncomfortable with something I try and figure out a way to fix the problem. And I did…. Well, I fixed the chaotic dinners at least. They rest is all still the same.
This dinner is for chaotic nights, like tonight might be for some of you.
All you do is boil you favorite cut of pasta, I love to use fettuccine, angel hair or any fun short cut shapes. While the pasta boils throw some cashews, sun-dried tomatoes, fresh grape tomatoes, garlic, basil, oregano and some parmesan if you would like in a food processor and blend until smooth and creamy. Drain the pasta, but reserve a few cups of the hot starchy cooking water. Stream the water into the cashew sauce until your desired constancy is reached. Season with salt and pepper. Plate the pasta add the sauce, some fresh basil and sprinkle with parmesan cheese.
DONE. In probably under fifteen minutes.
If you are a meat person you could add some grilled chicken or whatever meat you prefer. Plus, everyone will love the sauce. Adults, toddlers, teenagers, everyone. It’s a classic turned crazy easy and good for you too! Oh and the options for this sauce are endless. Pizza, sandwiches, meatballs or warmed up as a dipping sauce.
It’s a winner.
15 Minute Creamy Sun-Tomato Basil Cashew Pasta
- Serving Size: 4-6
- Preparation time: 5 minutes
- Cook time: 5 minutes
- Total time: 15 minutes
- 1 1/2 cup roasted cashews
- 2 cloves garlic
- 3/4 cup oil packed sun-dried tomatoes, slightly drained
- 1 cup grape tomatoes, divided
- 3/4 cup fresh basil, plus more for garnish
- 2 tablespoon fresh oregano
- 1/2 cup fresh parmesan cheese, grated, plus more for garnish (optional)
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1 pound dried pappardelle (or other long cut pasta)
Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
In the bowl of a food processor add the cashews and process 1 - 2 minutes or until the cashews start to become powdery. Add the garlic and process another minute. Add the sun-dried tomatoes and 1/2 cup of grape tomatoes and pulse until the sauce is a thick paste and red in color. Add the basil and pulse until finely chopped and combined.
Drop the pasta in the boiling water and boil according to package directions. Just before draining the pasta use a heat safe glass measuring cup and scoop out 1 1/2 cups of boiling pasta water. Drain the pasta.
With the food processor running slowly stream in the hot boiling pasta water until the paste becomes a sauce. Be careful not to add too much water all at once so you don't end up with a thinner sauce than you want. I used all 1 1/2 cups of water, but if you like a thick or thinner sauce use more or less. Add in the parmesan cheese if using and pulse a few times to combine.
Divide the pasta among 4-6 plates and top with a generous amounts of sauce. Slice the remaining grape tomatoes in half and sprinkle over the pasta. Garnish each plate with fresh basil and parmesan cheese if desired. Dig in!
I kind of love this!