Almond Basil Pesto Pasta with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes

I have been witness to countless pesto recipes, salivating at the thought, but unwilling to spend the money on those darn delicious, but expensive pine nuts! I started thinking of all of the nuts that would be a good substitute, cashews being an obvious choice. But then I realized I had a gigantic bag of almonds in the cupboard, and I felt like playing. So play I did, making homemade almond milk, and this beast (a good beast) of a pasta that tastes so incredibly good that I ate two (large) servings on my own. This pesto is bold, and the roasted cherry tomatoes are a must as they offer a sweet crunch, and literally pop in your mouth while you are eating. It also looks really pretty, and the colors (not necessarily the dish) reminds me of Christmas :)

Ingredients (makes 4 servings):
4 servings of pasta (you can use any type that you like, spaghetti included)
Boiling water, salt

1/2 cup whole almonds (blanched almonds are optional)
1 cup basil leaves (about 15ish) 
1/3 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup olive oil (you may want to add additional oil to smooth the pesto out)
3 cloves garlic
1/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes (just buy them already! ;) )
1/2 tsp sea salt
pepper, lots

1 cup cherry tomatoes
sea salt

1) While the pasta is boiling (until al dente), blend all of the pesto ingredients (except for the cherry tomatoes) in a blender until smooth (there may be some small pieces of almond scattered throughout, but they just add to the dish). Set aside. 
2) For the cherry tomatoes, place on a lightly oiled baking sheet, sprinkle with a little sea salt and pepper, shake, and place in a 375 degree oven for about 20 minutes (or until they begin to 'pop' open). 
3) Mix pasta with the pesto sauce. Gently incorporate the roasted cherry tomatoes. Serve hot, and enjoy!

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