Thursday, July 26, 2012

Garden Pantry

Yesterday was hot. The kind of heat that saps your energy along with your desire to accomplish anything outdoors, especially when you have been at the fair for a few hours taking care of animals and having projects judged. So as dinner time was approaching and I couldn't bring myself to get once again into the hot car and go to the store, I began to wrack my brain on what to make with what I have on hand.

 I have come across several recipes recently that require nuts. Of course, when I run to the store I buy a package (or two if they seem really small) only to get home and realize that I only needed a tablespoon of them. An idea took root, that involved a meal that I could throw together, without leaving home and with minimal outside activity. I ran out and grabbed a basil plant, yes, we are pulling whole plants as we have a ton and it has done quite well. Our garden pantry was open and Pesto was on the menu. Pesto is an easy fresh dish and in moments I was able to make enough for supper and two containers for the freezer. This time of year being able to put food away is key.

When I perused the nuts in my pantry, I came across a package of hazelnuts. These slightly chewy, earthy nuts added a wonderful heartiness to the pesto. I always try to keep some pasta in the pantry, and try to let the kids pick it, so we added our lovely basil pesto to orange (veggie) bow ties--because bow ties are cool! I always like to slice a few fresh cherry tomatoes on top but the tomatoes aren't ripe yet, or are they? I tested the tomatoes that have blushed but didn't seem to change much the last few days and then a thought occurred to me, we planted orange cherry tomatoes! Yes! The first handful of tomatoes on our pasta!  What we were left with was a wonderful and easy supper.

 Hazelnut Pesto 

4 Cups fresh basil
2 Large cloves garlic
1/2 C chopped hazelnuts
1 C grated Parmesan cheese
3/4 C extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Toss all of the ingredients in a food processor and blend. I normally add half of the oil to start and then add the remaining to the desired consistency. This yielded me three 1/2 cup containers. For our family that is the perfect amount to toss with a pound of pasts.

 What versions of pesto do you make??

1 comment:

  1. i have been cooking with nuts this week too... but my cooking has involved a walnut cake and a peanut curry.



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