What's Going on Today: Boating, grilling, napping. Quick stop by the JMcLaughlin trunk show. Ahhh, vacation.
Naptime Goals: Make an easy Artichoke-Lemon Pesto to toss with pasta for dinner, batch of Megan's Brownies.
Tonight's Menu: Grilled Chicken, Artichoke-Lemon Pesto with Capellini, brownies.
Parenting Lesson of the Day: JMcLaughlin clothes are the ultimate Mom uniform.
Ironically, today I am not writing about a seasonal recipe. Well, I guess it's seasonal in the sense that it's light and lemony, but it is not made from any farmer's market ingredients. At all. And you know what? I am not going to worry about it. I made this while I was on vacation and was in the mood for a twist on my regular pesto. My Mom has plenty of it in her freezer and I was craving something new and exciting. But something that I could make during naptime and didn't require strenuous stirring over open flames.
After spying a jar of Artichoke-Lemon Pesto in the store recently I thought it time to give it a try myself. Sometimes I'll just go ahead and buy the jar of something I want to taste, but in this case it seemed insanely overpriced. Why would I pay ten bucks for something I could make at home for two?
When my daughter went down for her nice long nap - children nap so well on vacation - I pulled out the processor and went to work. Using my regular pesto recipe as a guideline I matched portions of main ingredient (artichoke hearts) with the rest of the add-in's: pine nuts, cheese, garlic, lemon and olive oil. A few pulses and a pinch of salt later, voila, artichoke-lemon pesto! Since I had set aside an hour for my own nap I quickly scooped the pesto into a container, rinsed out the Cuisinart and bolted for the hammock. That evening we enjoyed an easy, fun dinner, the main component of which I had pulled together in ten minutes during naptime.
1 14oz can artichoke hearts, drained.
½ c. freshly grated Parmesan cheese
½ c. pine nuts
Zest of 1 medium lemon
Juice of 1 medium lemon
2 cloves garlic, peeled
½ c. good quality olive oil
Pinch or two of Kosher salt
1. Add the artichoke hearts, pine nuts, lemon juice, zest, garlic and salt to a food processor fitted with a blade. Pulse about 10-12 times until the ingredients come together, but are not completely smooth.
2. Pour the olive oil into the paste in a steady stream while pulsing until it comes together into a thick paste.
3. Store in the fridge until ready to use.
Naptime Serving Ideas: This pesto could be used several ways. In addition to tossing it with hot pasta, it would be wonderful spread on crostini and served as an appetizer, or used as a dip for vegetables.
Naptime Stopwatch: Making this takes 5 minutes. At the most.
Naptime Reviews: My daughter loved her pasta with the “yummy sauce” and we all devoured it. Next on my list is spreading it on crostini.