(NAPSI)—Springtime in California brings with it the season’s bounty of fresh, local produce that inspires home and professional chefs alike. From salads to sandwiches, pastas to soups, it’s pretty much a given that when a dish has “California” in its name, it’s likely a dish made even better with delicious avocados.

With premium California avocados at their peak, now is the perfect time to incorporate this delicious and nourishing fruit into any cuisine to give it that classic taste of the Golden State.

To kick off California avocado season, which runs spring through fall, two-star Michelin chef Josiah Citrin, of Los Angeles’ lauded Melisse and Charcoal Venice, elevated a simple pasta pesto dish with the use of the creamy fruit in his Linguine with California Avocado Pesto and Cherry Tomatoes.

“California avocados are one of the most versatile ingredients you can work with,” says Citrin. “Here, I have blended it seamlessly into a pasta sauce to add a velvety texture. Regardless of its shape or form, the California avocado brings vivacity to all the ingredients that surround it.”

California avocado lovers everywhere can get these seasonal recipes and more at www.CaliforniaAvocado.com.

Linguine with California Avocado Pesto and Cherry Tomatoes

Serves: 4
Prep time: 25 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Total time: 35 minutes

Ingredients:

1 lb. linguine, cooked al dente, reserving 1 cup of pasta water

2 ripe, Fresh California Avocados, seeded and peeled

1 cup baby arugula leaves

1 cup baby spinach leaves

1 cup fresh basil leaves, packed

¼ cup toasted pumpkin seeds

¼ cup toasted cashews

2 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed

3 Tbsp. lemon juice

3 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

1 tsp. sea salt

2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

1 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1 cup halved cherry tomatoes

2 Tbsp. julienned basil leaves, for serving

Instructions:

1. Place cooked linguine and reserved pasta water to the side.

2. Add the halved avocados, baby arugula, baby spinach, basil leaves, pumpkin seeds, cashews, garlic, lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil, sea salt and pepper to a blender or food processor and then blend until smooth.

3. Once the pesto is smooth, add the grated Parmesan and pulse a few more times to combine.

4. Place the pasta in a large serving bowl and top with the California Avocado Pesto.

5. Toss the pasta together with the pesto until coated.

6. Add the halved cherry tomatoes.

7. A small amount of reserved pasta water can be added to the pasta, as needed, to create a loose, silky pesto that coats the linguine evenly.

8. Sprinkle pasta with the julienned basil leaves and serve.

clicktotweet ““California avocados are one of the most versatile ingredients you can work with,” says two-star Michelin chef Josiah Citrin. “The California avocado brings vivacity to all the ingredients that surround it.” http://bit.ly/2JrL74O

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