Tuesday, July 14, 2015

at sea

My cooking mojo got up a left a bit ago and I've been struggling to find my way back. Two nights ago I  made what may arguably be the worst meal in my history. The base of the dinner was bento pork which I've made at least monthly since Molly posted the recipe but this time, I left it on too high a burner for too long and it ended up dry and overly salty and horrible. The tacos were bereft of both the slaw or salad they normally have as a topping as both had vanished from the fridge when I wasn't looking and overall it was a sad supper. My husband tried to make me feel better by telling me that one of his former girlfriends would have considered it a culinary masterpiece but I know terrible when I eat it.
smoke or cloud, I couldn't tell anymore

someone waded into ditches all along the trail

While recent dinners haven't been as awful as that one, I've been in a serious rut. Most of my suppers have been more about assembling than cooking.
on his way to kayak camp
 I could blame our unseasonably hot weather and the blanket of smoke that had my car covered in ash last week, thanks to forest fires raging in all directions (see unseasonably hot weather) but it doesn't really explain the blahs my cooking has been in for the past little while.
first zucchini from the garden

picking blackberries in early July?!

Here are some things that have saved my meals:

Almond pesto 
Cucumber and avocado salad
potato salad
scalloped tomatoes
sausages from here (also burgers, meat skewers, meatballs)
tomatoes from the garden

farm fresh fruit and veggies from the fruit stand and market
Dickie's ginger beer (on it's own or in Pimm's Cup - yum!!)

Last night I redeemed myself somewhat with a pesto pasta with chicken and roasted corn using the basil bunch I got from the market a few days ago and whizzed into a pesto. I used my food processor to make a chunky pesto as I am without a mortar and pestle to make authentic pesto. Instead of pine nuts, I added in a couple of spoons of almond pesto that I made the other night to go with some green beans which was the best part of that dinner.

Basil Pesto with almonds
1 bunch of basil, leaves stripped from stems
a few grinds of sea salt
2 tbsp almond pesto
50 grams shaved parmesan

Whiz the basil in a food processor until chunky. Add the salt, pesto and cheese and whiz briefly to mix. Pour in olive oil and mix until a chunky paste is formed.

Pesto Pasta with chicken and roasted corn
1 small package linguini
basil pesto
3 ears of corn, kernels cut of the cobs
1 cup diced cooked chicken (I used this one)
knob butter
parmesan cheese
dash of cream
salt and pepper

Cook the linguini in salted boiling water until al dente. Drain.

In a separate saucepan, large enough to hold the pasta and sauce, add a small knob of butter over medium heat. When the butter has melted, add the fresh corn kernels and saute until some of the kernels take on a golden brown colour. Add in the diced chicken and mix to heat. Add the drained pasta and pesto and toss to mix. Add a dash of cream and salt and pepper to taste. If you have some lemon around, squeeze some lemon over to taste. Add cheese and serve.

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