Tuesday, January 17, 2012

EAT: MACADAMIA, SPINACH + LEMON PESTO PASTA, SALAD WITH SPRINKLES + THE BEST DRESSING EVER.


SERVES 6 | PREP 20 MINS | COOKING 15 MINS | VEGETARIAN

Smug is the word I'd use after tonight's dinner.

While my five year old asked for fourths and fifths and my two year old kept asking for more 'fasta', my husband told me he had enjoyed a most superb dinner (yes, sometimes he talks like he lives in the 19th Century - God bless my man).

I can tell you, this doesn't happen around here often. And when it does, I want to break out in song Sister Maria style and do a happy jig.
And not only was it enjoyed by all, everything I made for dinner was picked mere moments before eating. Organic and oh-so-good-for-you.


Here tonight, we ate macadamia, spinach and lemon pesto pasta. (And no, I didn't make the pasta from scratch - I'm just not that dedicated.)

INGREDIENTS
2 cloves garlic
1 cup macadamias, roasted
200g baby spinach or rocket
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp lemon juice
1/4 cup vegetable stock
2 tbsp lemon rind
500g penne pasta

METHOD
1 Place garlic and macadamias in a food processor. Process until finely chopped.
2 Add spinach, oil, lemon juice and stock. Process until almost smooth.
3 Cook pasta until al dente. Drain pasta and leave a little water in the saucepan.
4 Return drained penne to the saucepan and add pesto and lemon rind. Toss over low heat until well combined. Serve immediately with parmesan and cracked pepper.

This makes oodles (great cold for lunches the next day), and the lemon in it rocks. Not everyone is a fan of The Lemon, but this family loves it!


While this was a simple home grown lettuce, tomato and cucumber salad, I did use this amazing dressing (thanks Lana @ Mamamia!).

INGREDIENTS
2/3 cup oil
1/3 cup brown vinegar
1/3 cup soft brown sugar
5 tbs whole egg mayonnaise (use S&W please – they don’t use cage eggs)
5 cloves of crushed garlic
3 tsps mild english mustard

METHOD
Shake it up with some salt and pepper.

This makes heaps. But I found that if you store the leftovers in the fridge, it will get used up for more salads. Or as a spread on crusty toasted bread, or as a dip. Seriously, it's that good.

As well as the awesome dressing, I made a salad sprinkle. I used to buy it a few years' back, but when it became unavailable, I thought it was easy enough to make myself.

INGREDIENTS
1/2 cup sesame seed
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
Soy sauce or tamari

METHOD
1 Dry roast sunflower seeds on a teflon coated frypan until golden. Add sesame seeds.
2 When both are lightly toasted, add a few dashes of soy sauce or tamari to the fry pan. Stir until the liquid has evaporated.
3 Store in a glass jar, or use immediately on your salad. Or both.


I usually make a bunch of this and store it for all the salads we have. It goes with everything, lasts well, adds lots of flavour, and makes a simple salad delish.


So, there you have it. All of this picked, cleaned, cooked and eaten within the hour. And happy boys. All of them.

Did I mention how smug I am?

So... what's cooking at your place this summer?