It has been workout season this summer in La Casa De Orozco! Every day it’s something, whether it be a leg workout, arm workout, plyometrics, or an old-school hike.
That said, the pasta cravings are REAL, guys. With all the energy being spent, it’s so nice to have a healthy dish that is restorative, full of good protein, while being simultaneously decadent! With this, you feel like you’re being bad, but in reality, you’re being good. Really, really good!
Asparagus and peas are among the class of plants that have the highest protein, and lowest carbs – specifically the asparagus. Peas have 7.9 grams of protein per cup, and 21g carbohydrates, with 7.4g dietary fiber for a net carb of 13.6g. Asparagus comes in at 2.9g protein per cup, which doesn’t seem like a lot, but of the non-legume vegetables, this is still one of the highest. It becomes more appealing numbers-wise with it’s carbohydrates which come in at 5.3g. Given the 2.8 grams of dietary fiber, we have a net carb of 2.5g.
Add these to the fact that we are using protein rich(14g/serving) chickpea pasta. (The Banza brand really blew my mind!) Using the cashews to get that luscious, creamy bechamel also bumped up the protein, complex carb, and healthy fat levels.
This has really been helping me get the good macro nutrients in, while also getting the micronutrients of the asparagus, peas, dill & lemon. Just 5 spears of asparagus contains 60% of the average daily requirement for folate, which helps prevent birth defects and heart disease1. Peas are a very good source of vitamin K, vitamin A, vitamin C, thiamin, and folate. They are also a good source of manganese.
If you’re body is in need of the slow burning, complex carb dish that is super high in protein to restore those hard-working, sore muscles, this dish is perfect.
Nutrition aside, the combination of lemon and dill just scream summer. Asparagus is fresh and crisp with tight leaves, and if you can’t find fresh peas from the farmer’s market (it actually is more of a Spring thing), use frozen, as they’re at the peak of freshness when they’re harvested & frozen. You can find fresh lemon nearly year-round, and grow your own dill! Having fresh herbs at your fingertips is the sign of a true kitchen witch.
Creamy Lemon Dill Pasta
- 1 Cup Cashews Raw
- 8 Ounces Oricchiette Pasta
- 1 Cup Peas Frozen
- 1 Pound Asparagus Stems trimmed & cut into 1 inch pieces
- 3/4 Cup Almond Milk
- 3 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
- 1 Teaspoon Sea Salt
- 1/2 Teaspoon Freshly Cracked Black Pepper
- 1 1/2 Teaspoons Garlic Fresh, Minced
- 1 Tablespoon Dill Fresh, Minced
- Rinse cashews and soak in 2 – 3 cups filtered water, covered for 2 hours or overnight. If soaking overnight, store them in the refrigerator.
- Boil pasta as per package directions. Two minutes before the pasta is done, add in the peas, and asparagus. Reserve 1/2 cup of the pasta water, drain, and place in a large bowl.
- In a blender, add the soaked cashews, almond milk, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and garlic. Blend until cashews are completely smooth, about 1 – 2 minutes.
- Add the cashew sauce to the pasta, along with the fresh dill. If the sauce is thick and needs a little thinning, add some of the pasta water, and mix to desired consistency. Divide among four plates, sprinkle with fresh dill fronds, and serve with extra lemon wedges.
1) 50 Best Plants on the Planet – The Most Nutrient-Dense Fruits and Vegetables, in 150 Delicious Recipes By: Cathy Thomas