Sunday, August 26, 2012

Sunday at the Table, Homemade Pasta and Pesto

I'm afraid our garden got a bit of a frost a few days ago.  It seems as though we always get our first frost this time of year.  It took me 3 years to figure this out though.  The forecast is always in the mid-forties (F), but apparently, we're a good 10 degrees colder than the local weather station. Sigh...

Luckily, the basil was spared.  Only a few of the plants were totally killed, so I've been busy trying to harvest what I can before the next round of cold weather comes through.  Taking into account our very slow start, it hasn't been a stellar year for the garden, but I'll take what I can get.  Here's what I brought in yesterday:
I decided to make my 2nd big batch of pesto today, and tried something different.  I blanched the basil in boiling water first, in an attempt to keep it bright green.  I never have liked the way pesto seems to turn brown after I make it. 
 The first batch I made this year, I used lemon juice, which helped some, but not as much as I'd liked.

I must admit that even though it's more work, I really liked the blanching technique!!  The top picture is the batch I made with the blanched leaves, the bottom, with lemon juice.

I always spread the extra out in freezer bags thin to freeze for later (bags to the right are the blanched basil pesto)!!

I like to take a few shortcuts to make it easier, including just throwing chucks of Parmesan cheese in the food processor and finally chopping it, instead of grating it.  I also use garlic paste from the store occasionally.

I also decided tonight to make fresh pasta.  I LOVE fresh pasta!  It's worth every bit of extra effort!!
Fresh pasta, pesto, and garden veggies combined to make the perfect summer meal tonight!!

There's only a few days left of Tuesdays at the (herbal) table over at "A Quilter's Table", so be sure to link up there, or just come see what others are cooking!!

1 comment:

  1. ya know, I have never heard of blanching your basil before making pesto, but the difference is obvious. That is very interesting!! Even tho it's bedtime, i am coveting your dinner - homemade pasta. Wow, you went all out - it looks SO good!! Thanks so much for sharing at the {herbal} table!