Friday, April 23, 2010

Pesto Pasta!

Happy Friday everyone! Did this week seem especially long? Today is the last day of test prep before our ELA exam, then Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and it's OVER! YAHOO! It puts so much stress on not only the teachers, but the kids too. I can't wait to be over and start teaching poetry! 

This morning I went to 6 am spin and did a quick 20 minutes weights workout. I love Fridays, 6:45 done and done with workout. This afternoon I'll be going to Whole Foods so wish me luck. I'm hoping to be good and not spend a ton of money, but it's SO hard in that store! 

Yesterday we got our organic produce box and it was filled with goodies. It was filled with beets, kale, lettuce, oranges, grapefruit, pears, string beans, carrots, zucchini and sprouts.  Two questions: What does it mean when you make a "massaged" kale salad? What do you put on grapefruit to make it really good?


And I also gave out my first sticker today to my friend at work:


Cute right?

The other day I was sitting on the couch reading all of your blogs when Danny texted me he was almost home. I had nothing planned for dinner so I figured I'd make some pasta, only to find out I had no canned tomatoes. I turned to twitter for some advice and I obviously got some good responses. My favorite for the moment was pesto, so I made my own version that turned out pretty good!

I dumped a handful of spinach and arugula into the food processor. Then I added about 1/4 cup olive oil, 2 cloves garlic, sea salt and about 1/4 cup grated cheese. Process until finely chopped and mixed together.

Put the mixture in a small saucepan and bring it to a slow boil.  Add 1/4 tsp  black pepper and 1 tsp basil. After you boil the pasta, drain it and save about 1/2 cup of pasta water and pour it into the "pesto". Continue to let it heat for about 5 minutes. Serve and enjoy!

It didn't come out as smooth as I'd like, so I have to work on that. 

Question for you all: I've been working on making some gluten free breads with millet. I made gluten free naan the other day and it looked great, but turned out tasting very grainy.  

Does anyone have an tips on how to make it taste better or stay together better? I noticed it kind of falls apart easily. I have NO experience in baking with millet flour so I am clueless. (I also have done NO research on this!) I also made 1/2 whole wheat, 1/2 millet flour pizza dough and that came out better than the naan. 

Any gluten free tips would be greatly appreciated! Happy Friday! Have a wonderful day!


Christie {Honoring Health} said...

I am gluten free but I tend to only bake with almond flour because it doesn't require all of the special mixing and ingredients of other gluten free flours (like millet, rice, tapioca). With gluten free flours, you have to have something that acts as a binder since there is no gluten to hold it all together. I know that xanthum gum, potato starch and tapioca starch are often times ingredients in gluten free baking. And so, that is why I bake with almond flour, it is *almost* like baking with regular flour. You may want to check out Gluten Free Girl for some recipes.

Oh, and as far as the graininess, honestly, unless you are using almond flour, there isn't much hope for that. It is REALLY hard to make non-grainy gluten free baked goods. At least in my opinion. Even things I buy from gluten free bakeries tend to be a bit on the grainy side.

Christie {Honoring Health} said...

Oh, and the massaged kale salad means it has literally been massaged with the dressing. The massaging helps to break the kale down to make it more tender.

pegasuslegend said...

I love that kind of idea for pesto. I just made the basil one, and ready to post it next...this is a great alternative an I love the flavors here this is an fabulous fabulous idea!!!!!!

healthyexposures said...

ahhh - no more pesto, pleaseee! haha, just kidding - even after having to eat it at least once a day for a week, I don't think pesto is something you can possibly get burnt out of. It's so good! Yours looks great - love the arugula and kale idea.
Glad your stressful exam stuff is almost done. Doesn't sound like much fun at all! And good luck at Whole Foods! I'm pretty sure the store will be happy to see you :P

Mardi @eatlivetravelwrite said...

Loving this pesto Nicole and I like the fact that it's a little chunky. Happy Weekend! said...

I saw your comment on Averie's blog and noticed you are a teacher.....I am one too :) Just wanted to say hello and yes my week has been so long. actually they have been all long since spring break!

Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen said...

I need to make pesto. I still have not done that! As for the gluten free thing goes. I have found that soaking my flours with the liquid ingredients works well too. Maybe for at least a couple of hours or overnight. Also some great binders are egg whites and flax eggs (1 TBSP flax meal mixed with 3 TBSP hot water). I love oat flour and buckwheat flour. Buckwheat is gluten free, but it helps things stick together really well kinda like regular flour. Can't wait to see what you try!

*Andrea* said...

the sticker is so cute!!! i love it!

i've always wanted to make homemade pesto- seems simple yet i'd most likely screw it up lol.

your workout's done before i even wake up haha

Kathleen said...

Thanks so much for the baked goodies! The sticker is just too cute! You're so thoughtful as always!
Thanks again

Ellen said...

I am totally clueless about cooking gluten-free ANYTHING, but my super-healthy, foodie friend made these yummy chocolate gluten-free rice krispie treats. Check 'em out!

Christine@ Grub, Sweat and Cheers said...

Nice looking pesto - I had asparagus last night and noticed on the tag a recipe for asparagus pesto - another one I wouldn't have thought of but have to try.

Erica Sara said...

Love the stickers- so cute!
Check out Gluten Free Goddess's website for some great flour mixtures. I make my breads with her recipes and they are delic & graininess free.

Mom is coming for the weekend and was trying to think of ideas to make for her. Gluten free pasta with pesto & fresh veggies it is! As always, thanks for the inspiration :)

Tina said...

Hi there! I just wanted to say thanks for stopping by my blog. Yours looks great! I feel your pain on the teaching stuff and how testing can cause so much stress. I used to teach high school before staying at home. Sometimes I miss it, but there are certainly things I'm glad I don't have to deal with anymore. I hope to see you around more. Don't be a stranger! :)

Emily (A Nutritionist Eats) said...

I need to try pesto with other greens besides basil, it looks so vibrant!

Kristi@Ja Cie Kocham said...

I adore naan bread! It's my "go to" bread when I'm craving pizzas. Now I'm craving pesto pizza! Thanks for the inspiration :o)

Angie said...

This looks great. I don't know anything about cooking gluten free or millet though. I need to try making naan, I love it!

Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) said...

i find that if you don't de-stem greens, just a little bit, even if you really process them, it's just not as smooth as store-bought pesto. not that that's bad, it's just different.

GF bread. I have no desire to learn b/c i dont like bread enough to care. LOL but GF bread baking is it's own art. for sure!

lynn @ the actors diet said...

broil the grapefruit maybe? it should caramelize.

Erica T said...

The pesto looks great and the sticker is so cute!

Susan said...

I want stickers like that!! SO cute!

I quite literally massage the kale. It gets softer and less bitter when you work it with your hands. It's quite good! As for grapefruit, there's nothing to make it taste better ;)

Christine @ Grub, Sweat and Cheers said...

like the new background colour!

Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) said...

1 million percent amazing improvement!!!!!!!!
i can read it, it doesnt cause my browser to jam up (never told you that before but it used to), and it's so fresh and light and non-blogger-ish (i have blogger too and i hate the look of blogger blogs, i.e. my own, til i re did it LOL).
Girl, great work!!!!!

Trix said...

I know you said you wanted it more smooth, but I really like the chunkiness of the pesto. Also - when I was little my mom used to bake 1/2 of a grapefruit with brown sugar and shredded coconut for a special breakfast for me, so I'm partial to that!

Emily Ziegler said...

This is excellent! And good for you!

Totally making this ASAP :-)

Post a Comment


Related Posts with Thumbnails

Subscribe by email

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner