I really love pesto of any sort: basil, kale, swiss chard, you name it, I’ll eat it. So, I decided to try a new recipe out that had been in my head for awhile and, lo and behold, it was delicious! Even G. loved it (he had two helpings of pasta). This dish just screams spring!
- 1 avocado, seeded and halved
- 1.5oz pkg of basil, washed
- couple glugs of olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- grated Pecorino Romano (optional)
- cooked pasta of your choice
Cook your pasta, whatever shape you decide, (I used gemeli, about 2 cups uncooked), set aside in a large bowl. Add avocado halves, basil, olive oil in a food processor and process until smooth. Use your best judgment with the olive oil. Add salt and pepper to taste. Bam, you’re done. Add pesto by spoonfuls to the cooked pasta (you don’t want to over-saturate it), and serve. I added a bit of grated Pecorino to our servings and halved grape tomatoes to mine. This goes well with red or white wine too.
Cold Farro Salad
I had meant to post this recipe in 2014 and didn’t notice it was hanging out in my drafts folder until just now. (Whoops). This salad can be eaten either hot or cold. It kind of reminds me of spring or summer, which is when it was originally supposed to be published. You can either make your own pesto, or use your preferred jarred brand.
- 1C. cooked farro
- 1/2C. cooked/roasted corn kernals
- 1/2 bunch of steamed asparagus, sliced into bite-sized pieces
- pesto (recipe below)
For the Pesto
- 1 bunch (or 2, if small) of basil, cleaned, patted dry
- Handful of toasted almonds
- 1/4 – 1/3 C. extra virgin olive oil (or more if necessary)
- 1 clove of garlic, chopped.
- Salt and pepper to taste
Combine all ingredients in food processor until well blended. I omitted cheese, but, you can certainly add some grated pecorino.
Cook farro according to directions. Add sliced asparagus and corn to a large bowl, then, add cooked farro (this will steam the asparagus a bit, or, you can steam in a dish with a bit of water in the microwave until crisp tender. I like my asparagus a little crunchy, so, I just steam it with the farro). Add the amount of pesto you desire, grate some pecorino on top and serve, or, let sit and eat cold. This salad is really good the following day.
Well, I think I’ve done it this year. I’ve eaten my weight in summer tomatoes. I can’t get enough of them because to me, the flavor of a good, ripe, juicy tomato epitomizes summer fruit and vegetables. Tomato and bean salad? Yes! Fire-roasted salsa? Please! Gazpacho? You bet. Sliced tomatoes and avocados on toast? Bring it. I get excited at the first site of tomatoes and buy them at least three times a week, and get wistful and sad at the last of them come Fall. Oh, and I’m pretty sure that this recipe will win over even those who aren’t fond of tomatoes. You know who you are. Ahem.
- 1 container of cherry tomatoes, or heirloom cherry tomatoes
- 1/4 C. extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 C. toasted almonds, chopped
- 1/2 C of basil
- 1/2 clove of garlic
- 2 cups pasta, cooked al dente
- Grated pecorino romano (optional)
Add tomatoes, oil, almonds, basil and garlic to a food processor and pulse until combined, but not soupy. Add pesto to warm, cooked pasta and cheese. Don’t add too many tomatoes (oops, like I did the first time) because you’ll have a soup or salsa instead of a pesto. You can adjust the garlic too. I didn’t want to overpower the flavor of the tomatoes….because I’m trying to enjoy the last of the best taste of summer. Insert sigh here: _______
Want to try a different kind of pesto? Cool, so did I. What follows is my adaptation of a conglomeration of recipes I found online. I don’t use cheese in my pesto, but would rather add to my pasta when I eat it. But, as always, you can adapt this to your taste and add some grated Pecorino Romano if you wish. I had my pesto with mini rigatoni pasta, and long fusilli. This recipe also works well as a dip with pita chips (or so I’m told by a ginger from Nebraska [he seems trustworthy enough ;)]). Enjoy!
- Trimmed, washed broccoli florets from one head of broccoli
- 1-2 cloves garlic
- 1/3 – 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup roasted almonds (optional)
- Handful of rinsed basil leaves
- Crushed red pepper to taste
- Salt, pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup of Pecorino Romano cheese (if using)
Trim and wash broccoli florets. You can either steam them in the microwave or in a steamer on the stove. I chose the lazy route (hello, less dishes to wash) and steamed them in a bowl in a bit of water in the microwave. Steam until they’re bright green (not mushy!). Add florets, basil leaves, almonds (if using), olive oil, crushed red pepper, garlic to the bowl of the food processor. Pulse until ground and just combined. You may find that you’ll need to add more olive oil at this point. Season to your liking. Consume!