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Archive for September, 2011

This past month has totally flown by! School’s been keeping me so busy; I still haven’t had any time to get in my own kitchen and make anything. And on top of all my school stuff, both my computer and cell phone decided to die on me, so I’ve had lots of fun and expensive things to deal with lately.

I have, however, found time to make lunch and dinner, of course. I know I usually (lately) only post dessert stuff, but something’s better than nothing right?

My husband and I are members of a local CSA (community supported agriculture) so I never know what veggies I’ll have to cook with until we go pick up our share every Sunday. Eating seasonally can be challenging, but once you figure out some basics and get creative with what’s available in your fridge it can be a lot of fun. And sometimes very pretty!

Some last-minute randomness a few weeks ago turned into this gorgeous combination of kale-cilantro pesto, roasted red beets, patty pan squash and turnips. Just look at how beautiful it is! I absolutely love the colors mother nature gives us.

Any random combination of veggies could go together to make this dish, so I won’t get all specific about the veggies. Just select what you want and cut them in half, lightly oil the cut sides, place them cut-side down in a baking dish and roast them at 375 until you can pierce them easily with a fork. Keep in mind that different veggies cook at different rates so not everything will be done at the same time.

Once they’ve cooled enough to touch, peel them if necessary, slice into 1/4 inch wedges or so. Place them in a bowl and season with salt, pepper and some minced cilantro. Try adding a little bit of olive oil and a splash of sweet white wine.

For the pasta I used gluten-free macaroni, but any type of pasta will do. Bring a pot of salted water to boil and cook the noodles until al dente; drain and keep warm.

Kale-Cilantro Pesto

  • 4 C kale
  • 1/2 – 3/4 C cilantro
  • 1/4 C roasted, unsalted cashews
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 1 T lemon juice
  • 3 T water (or more olive oil)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 t salt
  • 1/2 – 3/4 t black pepper

Typically pesto is made from uncooked ingredients, but I decided to blanch the kale for a minute before making the sauce. Blanching tends to help tone down some of the bitterness in leafy greens. If you decide to blanch, bring a pot of water to boil, toss in the kale and let it cook for about a minute. Plunge the kale into an ice bath once that minute it over to stop the cooking and then drain it.

Toss the cashews into a coffee grinder, preferably one not used to grind coffee or you’re gonna get some off flavors. Grind up the cashews.

Place all the ingredients in a food processor and pulse until everything is evenly combined. Toss the pasta with the pesto and then add the veggies and tuck in!

Well, there you have it. I have about five more weeks of school left, so hopefully this blogging dry spell will end soon. Until then, happy eating!

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