Eats: Veggie-pesto pasta9:38 PM
I mentioned in a previous post that I was going to make some pesto and Monday after work I finally did! I even braved the hot temps and made a pasta out of the sauce by adding noodles and veggies. Kyle and I are pesto addicts, but we hate the kind from the store because there is always too much salt in it. I made some from scratch a few years ago and it was really good! So since we have four giant basil plants in the yard, I decided to go to town on it. I don't really follow recipes, I use them more as guidelines, but I will try to explain how I made it and also some instructions for the pasta.
-Basil, about two cups firmly packed.
-Walnuts or Pine nuts, about a half-cup.
-2-3 garlic cloves.
-2/3 + cup extra virgin olive oil.
-Salt & pepper to taste
*Mix the basil, garlic, walnuts and about 2/3 cup of olive oil in a blender, until it resembles a thick sauce. Remove from blender and add more olive oil (I kinda drizzled it along until I felt it was enough). I didn't have any salt or pepper (how, I don't know) so I ended up adding a pinch of celery salt and it came out fine. I sprinkled only a little bit of the cheese because dairy makes me sick, but really it is all about taste. I would start out with a little and add more as you feel necessary. You can also squeeze a little lemon juice in it for taste as well, and I have heard hemp nuts are great instead of walnuts (the pine nuts were very pricey at the store I was at).
**You can always make batches of this and freeze for three months if you leave out the cheese (you can add it when it thaws). Just make sure to drizzle a little of the olive oil on the top before you throw it in the freezer.
Next I took some whole-wheat conchiglie noodles and cooked them up. I then scoured the fridge for some veggies and came up with tomatoes and red peppers. I sliced them both and sauteed them with some of the extra virgin olive oil and sprinkled a little of the celery salt on them. When the pasta was done, I simply drained it and mixed the pesto in, right in the pot. I topped the veggies on when I was done and I threw together a simple salad out of spinach leaves, tomato and some of the cheese and a little Asian-sesame dressing.
This was enough for the two of us, two big plates as you can see and there was enough left-over. Kyle added some grilled chicken to the left-overs, which is something I wanted to do, but I had forgot and left it in my freezer, haha.
I was pretty pleased with this simple dish as I will only really cook things that take about a half-hour to make. I am going to be including more food posts on this blog because now our garden is kicking butt, I am ready to start actually trying new things. I am making alterations to my diet as well, I am going dairy-free (as much as I can). I went shopping today and got a bunch of essentials to help me make the transition. I love dairy but it hates me and my reactions to it is getting worse and worse. My Mom's birthday was last week and I barely touched my dinner because of the giant glop of Greek yogurt that I ate that afternoon. Kyle has been pretty supportive so far, which is awesome. My diet is going to be similar to a vegan diet, only I still eat meat, and probably honey. I can still eat products that have dairy if it is a small amount, but I am going to see how it goes.
In other news, this bad-boy and 12 of his brothers and sisters are popping up in the garden so stay tuned to see how I figure out a meal around this: