Monday, September 21, 2009

Kitchen warm up (sunflower seed pesto/ olive tapenade)


Have you seen my new kitchen lately? I am awfully excited to start using this space. Going back and forth between the island and here has not been condusive to creating amazing (or many for that matter) meals. I may get here and realize that the tahini I just bought is on the island or I'll be on the island and realize that you can't get dried dates out there, and my stash is on the mainland. So today I started small. I want to get the kitchen ready and Chopper friendly for after I have the baby, and flavoring is the best way to do that. He can make pasta, but making a sauce may be a different story. He can grill a piece of fish, but what about salad dressing to accompany? So today I stuck with some simple, but awesome ways to spice up a meal, dressing, or sauce. Sunflower seed- Basil Pesto and Olive Tapenade.

I loved the green on green on green in this picture, until I went to take it, I hadn't noticed the trees out the window.

Sunflower Seed-Basil Pesto
1 big bunch basil
2 cloves garlic
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
2 inch piece of parmesan
1/2 tsp sea salt
ground pepper to taste

In food processor, process garlic and olive oil, then cheese and sunflower seeds, making a paste. Add basil, salt and pepper and blend till smooth. This time of year pesto tends to be in abundance, it is how we use it that gets creative and sparks deliciousness. Spread on bruschetta, add to pasta, use on pizza, add a touch of olive oil to make it a salad dressing, use as a marinade for fish or shrimp, use it a flavor wherever flavor is needed.

Olive Tapenade
(as adapted from Once Upon a Tart cookbook)

1 cup kalamata or black olives
2 cloves garlic
1/2-1 cup fresh basil
2 Tbl lemon juice
4 Tbl capers, drained
1/2 cup olive oil

In food processor, process everything but olive oil, till pureed. Slowly add olive oil while processor is running (this will ensure that it emulsifies).

The olive oil in both of these recipes will keep the basil and the olives from turning, giving you a much longer shelf life for both of these spreads.

1 comment:

natalie said...

wow, you really did get a lot accomplished today. The olive tapenade sounds great, and pesto is a sacred thing to me (except for the last time that I tried to make it -- ouch!)