Pesto is Best-o
I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but winter is coming.
And do you know what? If Jon Snow won’t be there, I’ll stick with summer, thanks. Mmmm, Jon Snooo-owehh.
Do you know what stinks about winter and food blogging?
- It gets dark crazy early, so picture lighting isn’t fab if you eat at 7:30 as we often do
- It’s cold
- It’s so cold that I don’t want to leave the house
- Grocery stores are outside the house
- There’s nothing edible I can hunt inside my house, so I need grocery stores because annoying family members yell “I’m hungry!!” at me, 24 hours a day. Don’t they know that it’s winter? I vote that we hibernate, and then I won’t have to feed anyone. Although my husband, for one, wouldn’t have enough fat to live off of for even, like, 2 hours. It’s kind of annoying.
But then it was so chilly today that I did decide to go against the truth of #5 and hunt inside my house for today’s dinner. Don’t worry, we didn’t eat my little sweetie.
Bala doesn’t have enough fat on her to last us very long either, so she was safe. I can’t promise whippets won’t ever be on this blog as a dangerous food, though, especially if SOMEone doesn’t get a handle on her “spotty” housebreaking skills.
Anyway, instead of going to the store or eating my dog, I hunted in my pantry and freezer. I’m always quite proud of myself when I live off the land of my kitchen without opening my wallet. But hunting that way does mean that I’m forced to get a little creative, putting together a weird personal episode of Chopped and crossing my fingers that my husband doesn’t throw any complaints my way. Today I wanted to make use of a giant bin of dried mushrooms that I couldn’t resist at Costco a few weeks ago
I bought them dreaming of soups and … well … actually, I had never cooked with dried shrooms so I bought them without having any idea of what I was going to do with them. And I still don’t really know, because I’ve never rehydrated anything. But I definitely liked the idea of a plethora of everlasting forest gems, and I was determined to figure them out. I Googled around and found a comment that said someone had used them in a pesto, but there was no recipe. So I made one up! Yay me! I had all ingredients kicking around, so maybe you do too. I didn’t measure a single thing, and I’m not going to fake it and guess measurements for you, because every cook should feel comfortable going with their gut at times. Pesto is a forgiving thing, so just go for it.
Dried Mushroom Pantry Pesto, with Edamame Enoki Pasta
- Healthy handful of dried mushrooms
- About 2 cups of arugula or basil or beet greens or other greens (Don’t get this from your pantry, that would be gross. But hopefully there’s some in your fridge — there was arugula in mine)
- 1 clove of garlic
- Healthy handful of parmesan
- about a cup of walnuts or other nuts
- Olive oil
- Pasta for 2, boiled and drained
- Edamame (happened to be in my freezer)
- Enoki mushrooms (oddly, happened to be in my fridge)
- Boil pasta. Meanwhile, add all pesto ingredients to food processor. Whiz them together, then add olive oil in a stream until pesto gets loose enough to toss with pasta.
- Heat a few Tbsp of oil in a pan. Cut dirty roots from enoki and fry gently in the oil for a few minutes, adding a few handfuls of frozen edamame and cooking that too.
So quick, easy, and cheap. The dried mushrooms definitely gave the pesto a forest-y earthy shroominess, the texture that came from my coincidental veggies was shockingly interesting. I’m going to cook with enoki more often. I bet the blend of nuts, edamame, bitter greens, and wild mushrooms did wonders for my vitamins, essential aminos, and brainy fats, too. I’m probably ready to scale that big Game of Thrones wall now. I would be if wine didn’t exist, anyway. Rating: 3 Yums. I’d go lady-and-the-tramp with Jon Snow on these noodles (If I were single, of course. Ahem.).