Saturday, September 6, 2008

Pesto Sauce

Serves 4-6

This recipe is the best recipe that I have found for making pesto. It takes about 20-25 minutes of solid chopping, but is well worth it. More accurate ingredient quantities are as follows:

  • 2 cups of firmly chopped basil
  • 3 medium cloves of garlic (use 2 if you do not like the taste of raw garlic)
  • scant 1/4 cup of raw pine nuts
  • roughly 3/4 cup parmesan
  • 3-4 T extra virgin olive oil
  • salt to taste
  • reserved pasta-cooking water
A few notes on this recipe.
  • It is NOT necessary to ensure that the ingredients are fully chopped in the first few rounds of chopping. This is especially true when you are chopping the basil.
  • Do not use whole wheat pasta with pesto. Pesto is simply too delicate a flavor and can't stand up to the coarse taste of whole wheat.
  • Fresh pasta is recommended
  • Add freshly chopped tomatoes or sausage
  • You may freeze any pesto you don't use. Make sure you cover it thinly with more olive oil. When defrosting DO NOT microwave.

Corn and Feta Salad

Serves 2-4

  • 1 pound frozen corn, defrosted
  • 1/4 pound good quality feta
  • 1/2 cup diced red onions, 1/4" dice
  • 2-3 T. very finely minced jalapeno
  • 2-4 T minced cilantro
  • Juice of one lime
  • Kosher salt to taste
Mix all ingredients together. Add salt to taste.

Good with seared tuna, or with barbecued chicken, or BBQ chicken pizza.

Cumin-Seared Tuna with Jalapenos

Serves 2

  • 1 pound very fresh tuna
  • 2 jalapenos
  • cumin
  • kosher salt
  • white pepper
  • Sesame oil
Slice jalapenos as thinly as you can, no more than 1 millimeter thick. It is more important that the jalapenos be thin than that they be complete circles. If you have a mandolin, use it.

Pat dry tuna with paper towels. Liberally sprinkle salt, pepper and cumin on each side of the tuna steaks. Pat spices firmly only the tuna.

Heat a pan to very hot. Add sesame oil and allow it to get very hot, too. Add tuna, sear on each side for 1 minute.

Remove steaks from pan and slice across the grain into 1/4" slices. Arrange on plates, serve a bowl of jalapeno slices with each.

Appetizer variation. Take each slice and cut it up further, into 1" square slices. Place tuna on a serving platter, add a jalapeno slice on each piece of tuna. 1 pound of tuna will serve around 20 people.