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Pesto, Pesto, Pesto!

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Arugula pesto

 

This year Jason decided to get our local CSA so we could have farm fresh food. We have been getting our fresh veggies, capsule dairy and meat since early summer, and we have been loving it! So have our friends. We’ve been having what I call CSA BBQ’s and CSA dinner parties. One thing about getting all this fresh food is, it really is a lot. So you have to be very creative and eat a lot! Having friends willing to help is a blessing. One thing we’ve been getting is greens. Lots and lots of greens. We eat them for breakfast with fried or poached eggs on top, lunch and dinner. But one of my favorite things we have been doing is taking our arugula, cilantro and parsley and making pesto out of them. Not only do we use all of these tasty greens, we get to enjoy them at our leisure. You can use them as spreads, in pasta, as pizza sauce or add to soups, even rub on a chicken and roast it! The pesto will keep in the fridge for about two weeks or you can  freeze it, which is great way to to make sure it doesn’t go to waste.

 

 

Arugula and Cilantro/Parsley Pesto
Author: 
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: ½ cup
 
Ingredients
  • 2 cups arugula tightly packed
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoons pine nuts
  • ¼ cup Parmesan cheese
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • ½ lemon squeezed and separated
  • Pinch of salt and pepper
Instructions
  1. Roast pine nuts
  2. Drizzle a small amount of oil on bottom of blender
  3. Add arugula, Parmesan, pine nuts, half of lemon juice, salt and pepper
  4. Start blending and slowly add oil
  5. Blend till you get a good consistency
  6. Taste and add more salt, pepper and rest of the lemon juice if needed.
Notes
I love garlic that's why I added so much. But if that is too much use one clove.
For cilantro parsley pesto you just need to switch out a few ingredients
1 cup packed cilantro leaves
1 cup packed parsley
2 tablespoons almonds(some say blanched almonds but I don't think it's necessary)
And continue as normal.

The Winter Cocktails

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Fishes

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fisheatingfish

 

Jason had a friend over for bbq the other night and we had a small sea food fest.  We started out with mussels.  I steamed them with a semi sweet dark beer we crafted, order added some pickled ginger, a few sweet pickled pearl onions that we canned a couple winters ago and a little pickle juice to cut the sweetness.  They were amazing!  But the real show stopper was the Branzino (striped bass) and Sea Bass that they bought.  Whole fish, gutted and deboned of course.  Well not totally deboned as that is very hard to do.  We salted and peppered the cavity then put whole sprigs of rosemary and lemon slices, wrapped them up in foil and grilled them for about 12 minutes on each side.   The result was a very aromatic, moist, flaky delicious fish.   The perfume of the rosemary was light, and the lemons kept the fish from drying out – and of course the citrus aspect.  Now most people wouldn’t use such an aromatic herb, and usually I wouldn’t either.   It was one of those happy accidents.  We were going to use thyme, but we accidentally bought the wrong herb.  Oops!  We were all glad we did since there was barely any fish left over for lunch the next day.  Of course now I am craving fish with thyme and lemon.  Guess that means another bbq!!

Pork Shoulder with Fennel Slaw

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So I came up with this recipe one night when we had some friends come over and convinced them to stay for dinner.  We were already three hours into making a pork shoulder but hadn’t decided what else to go with it.  I looked around the kitchen as I usually do to see what we need and I found a fennel bulb and thought, medical hmmmmmm what can I do with this?  I was already making and Asian inspired pork shoulder, for sale   Why not continue that theme with a fennel coleslaw?  So here is the recipe for both!!!

Asian Pork Shoulder with Fennel Slaw
Author: 
Recipe type: Main and Side
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
Ingredients
  • 3-4 pound pork shoulder
  • 5-6 cloves of garlic
  • ½ cup soy sauce
  • ½ cup rice wine vinegar
  • ½ cup fish sauce
  • ½ cup dark agave nectar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon Sriracha
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh ginger
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • SLAW
  • 1 medium to large fennel bulb
  • 1 large carrot
  • ¼ quarter of red bell pepper
  • 4 green onions
  • Dressing
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • ¼ tablespoon of fish sauce
  • ¼ tablespoon of white wine vinegar
  • Sprinkle of red pepper flakes
  • Salt and pepper
Instructions
  1. Score shoulder
  2. Smash garlic and place cloves in scored pork
  3. Combine all other ingredients in a bowl
  4. Place shoulder in plastic bag
  5. Add marinade
  6. Refrigerate from 6 hours to 24 hours
  7. When done marinating preheat oven to 400
  8. Place shoulder and marinade in roasting pan
  9. Cover with parchment paper and aluminum foil
  10. After 30 minutes lower heat to 300
  11. Cook for 4 hours
  12. Take off parchment and foil
  13. Cook for another 20-30 minutes for crispy skin
  14. Check with meat thermometer, should read 185 degrees when done.
  15. Remove from oven cover with foil again and let sit for 20 minutes before serving.
  16. FENNEL SLAW
  17. Julienne fennel bulb, carrot and red pepper.
  18. Chop onion
  19. Toss in bowl
  20. Mix dressing and pour over slaw
  21. Toss slaw to coat with dressing
  22. Salt and pepper to taste
  23. Serve immediately at room temperature.
Notes
Cooking time and temp varies with each oven. Keep an eye on your roast and baste the shoulder with juices. I like to check and baste every 30minutes or so. You don't want a dry shoulder. Dressing for slaw - taste and add more fish sauce or vinegar for your preference. Prep time does not include marinading time. If it's already too hot for you to have the oven on for 5-6 hours then use a crock pot for the roast. Just cut the fat off and pierce the meat then put the garlic cloves in the holes before you marinade. Also since you've cut off the fat, keep a good eye on it so it doesn't get dry. Cook on low for about 4-6 hours. You will know when it's done, it should fall off the bone.