Friday, December 09, 2005

Week 34 - RED PEPPER PESTO

Saskatchewan Menu of the Week -- 5 December 2005

Breakfast – Toast with honey.
Lunch – Cheese and sprout sandwich.
Dinner – Pasta with Red Pepper Pesto.

RED PEPPER PESTO
Traditionally, we think of pesto made with basil and pine nuts. But technically, a pesto is any smooth blend usually made with garlic, olive oil and cheese. This is delicious and freezes well. I buy local hothouse red peppers in summer and freeze a few batches for the winter months.

several cloves of roasted garlic (see note below)
2 red peppers, roasted and peeled (see note below)
3-4T oil
3/4 cup parmesan cheese
1T blue cheese
fresh thyme
salt and pepper

Mix everything in a blender until smooth. Taste and adjust the flavour ingredients to your taste.

Note: To roast garlic, cut a slice off the top of a whole bulb of garlic, smother the cut surface with olive oil, wrap in tinfoil and bake in hot oven until soft, about 30 minutes. Roasted garlic is nuttier and smoother than raw garlic. It keeps well wrapped in tinfoil and goes nicely in a pasta sauce, omelet or wherever you would put garlic. To prepare the red peppers, broil in the oven, turning to blacken every surface. (Be careful to char just the skin and not the flesh.) Put hot peppers in a paper bag until cool enough to handle. Peel the charred skin off the flesh and discard along with the seeds.

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