Monday, August 18, 2014

Better together

We talked about having a larger garden than we did last year, and for the most part we did.  I had visions of the whole back being a treasure trove of fruits and vegetables, well that did not happen.  We needed to keep what little grass we had, and let's face it we are not in the position to have  the front of the back yard tilled for a garden.  I cross my fingers and hope for next year.  The bright side of it was that we got to have quite a few herbs and vegetables in the front and side.  The front has the mash barrels with tomatoes, basil, thyme, sage, rosemary, and oregano.  Then there are the smaller pots with all the rest of the herbs.  The tomatoes and parsley that were planted on the side have grown fantastically.

We have been kicking it around for about two weeks now that we need to make Basil Pesto with all or part of the basil that is planted in both the ground and the barrels.  Pignoli Nuts were on the list for the Bulk Barn, yes I did get them, and yes the have been burning a hole in the cabinet.  They have been calling to me "eat me raw, toast me, eat me, use me".  Sunday I couldn't  bear to listen to the Pignoli voices anymore, Andrew harvested about half of the basil in the barrel.  This was the first time that we made Pesto Sauce.  While he was out picking I was getting things in the kitchen together and of course, the camera.  I scrubbed the big kitchen sink so that we could wash/clean the basil. and it could stay hydrated till we were ready.  The longest part of the endeavor was spent taking the leaves of the stalks/branches.  We used the salad spinner to dry the leaves in batches.  After I spun each bunch, I laid them out on the flour sack towels to make sure they were dry.  We washed, picked, and dried about 10 cups of basil leaves.  It took about 90 minutes.

When all the leaves were done, Andrew then toasted the pignoli in a dry skillet in 2 batches so that the pan was not crowded.

I stuffed half of the basil, cheese, and garlic into the into the food processor, then whirred it till it got chopped for the most part.

 Added the roasted pignoli nuts, whirred some, then added the rest of the basil.  It was then that I added really, really taste tested good EVOO.  Andrew did side by side taste comparison of our EVOO, then selected the one that tasted the best.

That was it....just a few simple ingredients
Now that is beautiful Pesto.  Just as important is the macaroni.  I love long fusilli with pesto and I had them fresh in my hand on Saturday.
I put the fusilli sad....Then I knew my next favorite for pesto is malfaldini.  They hold the sauce perfectly on the flat middles and the pesto clings to the ribbon sides, now that is just all that.

Topped with a bit more cheese....
Just getting a little greedy, sometimes you just have to.  We added some cherry tomatoes from the garden....
Now that is all that.....and there was enough leftover for me to freeze four 8 ounce containers. 

just like peas and carrots

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