Garden Pasta Salad with Bocconcini

foodie

Thoughts before cooking:

So I was looking though the recipes in this magazine and I spotted this one. It  sounded absolutely delicious and I couldn’t wait to make it.

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Ingredients:

Dressing:

  • 1 Clove of Garlic
  • 1/2 Cup of Cherry Tomatoes (preferably mixed colors)
  • 3 Tablespoons of Red Wine Vinegar
  • 1/4 Cup of Fresh Basil
  • 1/3 Cup of Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Salad

  • Salt
  • 8 oz Campanelle or Fusilli Pasta (~4 Cups)
  • 1 Small Zucchini
  • 1.5 Cups of Halved Cherry Tomatoes
  • 1 Cup of Halved Bocconcini (Small Mozzarella Balls)
  • 1/4 Cup of Slivered Almonds or Pine Nuts, Toasted
  • 1/2 Cup of Basil, thinly sliced
  • Pepper

Directions

  1. Bring a small saucepan of water to boil; add the garlic and cook for two minutes.
  2. Remove the garlic and place in a blender with the cherry tomatoes, vinegar and basil; puree until smooth.
  3. With the motor running, add the olive oil in a slow, steady, stream and blend until smooth.
  4. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Bring a large pot of water to boil, adding the pasta and cooking until al dente.
  6. Drain and rinse under cool water, shaking off the excess.
  7. Transfer the pasta to a bowl and toss with the dressing.
  8. Shave the zucchini into strips with a vegetable peeler or mandoline; halve the strips crosswise and add to the pasta.
  9. Add the tomatoes, bocconcini, pine nuts or almonds, and basil.
  10. Toss.
  11. Season with salt and pepper.
  12. Serve immediately or refrigerate, covered, up to 6 hours (bring to room temperature before serving.)

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Thoughts After Cooking:

It was phenomenal.

wow

I loved it!!!

loveitSupernatural

I took it to a potluck and it was gobbled up in like five mins.

Rachel_pasta_ooh_mine_eating_stuff

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For more from Food Network Magazine, go to Broken Lasagna with Zucchini-Tomato Sauce

For more salad recipes, go to Happy 4th of July Triple Berry Salad

For more recipes, go to Mini Lemon Pancake Cookies

Brussels Sprouts, Turkey Sausage, & Pesto Pizza Casserole

pizza

Thoughts Before Baking:

I found this in a Real Simple magazine:

RealSimple

It looked and sounded delicious, so I thought I would give it a try. I mean you all know how much I love anything pesto and pizza.

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Ingredients:

  • 2 Tablespoons of Olive Oil
  • 1.5 lbs of Pizza Dough
  • 1/3 Cup of Prepared Pesto
  • 1.5 Cups of Shredded Mozzarella or Provolone Cheese
  • 1/2 lb of Uncooked Turkey Sausage, Crumbled
  • 1/2 lb of Brussels Sprouts, thinly sliced

Pesto:

  • 2 cups of basil leaves, packed
  • 3 to 4 Garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
  • 2/3 Cup of Olive Oil
  • 4 Tablespoons of toasted pine nuts
  • 1/4 cup of freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Directions:

  1. Prepare the basil first. Remove basil leaves from stems.
  2. In a blender or food processor; mix 1/3 cup of olive oil, basil leaves, chopped garlic, and blend.
  3. Add nuts and cheese, mix again, adding another 1/3 cup of oil. Sauce should be smooth.
  4. Refrigerate until needed.
  5. Heat oven to 425 degrees F.
  6. Coat a 9 x 13 inch pan with 1 tbsp of oil.
  7. Press the dough into the pan, covering the bottom and sides of the pan.
  8. Top the dough with pesto, cheese, sausage, and Brussels sprouts.
  9. Cook for 25-30 minutes
  10. Wait 5 minutes and then serve.

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Thoughts After Reading:

I forgot to take the picture or else I would have included one. Well this pizza was delicious.

fantastic

I can’t wait to make it again!

joker-yum

The pesto was a perfect compliment and it was just so easy to make. Took no time at all.

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For more pizza recipes, go to Pizza Siciliana

For more casseroles, go to Breakfast Omelet

For more pesto recipes, go to Cheesy Pesto Pull Apart Bread

For more recipes, go to Caraway Rye Bread

 

Gorgonzola Cream Cheese Log

Victorian-Christmas-Traditions

So this is our last Christmas recipe. It has been some fun times and I hope you have tried and enjoyed the recipes as much as I have.

So today’s recipe, I had thought about doing something Victorian, because I reviewed Charles Dickens’ mystery, but changed my mind. Instead I wanted to do a recipe I thought was really tasty.

Thoughts before cooking:

So when I was planning the Christmas reviews for this blog I kept trying to figure out what would be a good thing to end on? What was something we could all enjoy. Then I was invited to a Christmas party, and as I tried to think of what to bring, it hit me. I could do this cheese log my sister made years ago. It was the best cheese log I had ever tasted, so I signed up to bring it.

Weeks later as I searched and searched for the recipe, it turned out to be missing.

Blog-Child-Support-Oh-No

I asked my sister if she remembered what went in it or what it was called or what magazine/website she got it from. She could remember zilch.

So I combed the web searching for something, anything that seemed vaguely familiar. I sent her the recipes but she responded with a negative. None of them were right.

luke-noooo-o

I found myself giving up. I had resigned myself to have to try to find something else when she found it. She found the perfect recipe. Thank goodness.

YayHappy-Success-GIF

But now the question was, was it really as good as I remembered it?

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Ingredients:

  • 16 Tablespoons of Chive and Onion Cream Cheese
  • 16 Tablespoons of Gorgonzola or Other Blue Cheese
  • 8 Tablespoons of Butter
  • 8 Tablespoons of Chopped Pine Nuts or Walnuts, Toasted
  • Plastic Wrap
  • Crackers

Directions:

  1. Stir together cream cheese, gorgonzola, butter, and nuts.
  2. Arrange in a one-inch diameter log.
  3. Wrap in plastic and chill for one hour or until firm.
  4. Serve with crackers of your choice

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cheeselog

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Thoughts After Reading:

It still was as delicious and posh as I remembered. I absolutely loved it and couldn’t stop eating it.

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So that’s it for now. Merry Christmas everyone!

christmas

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For more Christmas recipes, go to Sand Tarts

For more appetizers, go to Misdemeanor Mushrooms

For more recipes, go to Gingerbread Men Cookies

 

Broccoli & Tortellini Salad with Pesto

tortellini

So I collect old magazines. I cut the pictures out and make collage cards. So as I was thumbing through one of these magazines I found a recipe for Broccoli & Tortellini Salad with Pesto, it sounded good so I thought I would try it out.

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Ingredients:

Pesto:

  • 2 cups of basil leaves, packed
  • 3 to 4 Garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
  • 2/3 Cup of Olive Oil
  • 4 Tablespoons of toasted pine nuts
  • 1/4 cup of freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Pasta:

  • 16-oz Package of Cheese Tortellini
  • Frozen Broccoli Florets
  • 1 Tomato

Directions:

  1. Put on a large pot of water to boil.
  2. While water is heating, prepare the pesto.
  3. Remove basil leaves from stems.
  4. Wash leaves and dry them on paper towels. (Make sure the leaves are dry or the recipe will not work.)
  5. In a blender or food processor, mix leaves with chopped garlic, 1/3 cup of olive oil and blend.
  6. Add nuts and cheese, mix again, adding another 1/3 cup of oil. Sauce should be smooth.
  7. Refrigerate until needed.
  8. Cook tortellini in water according to package instructions.
  9. Cook broccoli according to package instructions.
  10. Transfer broccoli and tortellini to a large bowl.
  11. Toss with pesto.
  12. Serve.
  13. Slice one tomato and serve on the side.

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broccolitotelinisalad

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Thoughts after cooking:

I thought this meal was good, but not great. I didn’t care for the broccoli in the salad and thought it needed an extra umph. I’ll have to work on it and post if I come up with a good recipe.

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For more pasta dishes, go to Chicken, Asparagus, and Tomato Pesto Pasta

For more on cooking with pesto, go to Pasta with Roasted Asparagus, Artichokes, and Pesto

For more mysterious recipes, go to Butter Berry Cookies

Chicken, Asparagus, and Tomato Pesto Pasta

KnitPurlDie

Thoughts prior to cooking:

This was a re-imagining of the Pasta with Roasted Asparagus, Artichokes, and Pesto recipe from Knit. Purl. Die.

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Ingredients:

Pesto:

  • 2 cups of basil leaves, packed
  • 3 to 4 Garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
  • 2/3 Cup of Olive Oil
  • 4 Tablespoons of toasted pine nuts
  • 1/4 cup of freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Pasta:

  • 1 lb of pasta
  • Olive oil
  • Salt & pepper
  • Large bunch (1 lb or more) of asparagus
  • 2 Chicken breasts, chopped into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 Medium onion, chopped
  • 2 Garlic cloves, diced
  • 1 Cup of Cherry tomatoes
  • Pesto sauce
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese

 

Directions:

  1. Start with pesto sauce. Remove basil leaves from stems.
  2. Wash leaves and dry them on paper towels. (Make sure the leaves are dry or the recipe will not work.)
  3. In a blender or food processor, mix leaves with chopped garlic, 1/3 cup of olive oil and blend.
  4. Add nuts and cheese, mix again, adding another 1/3 cup of oil. Sauce should be smooth.
  5. Refrigerate until needed.
  6. Heat oven to 425°.
  7. Cook pasta to package directions. Set aside.
  8. Wash asparagus and trim ends about 2-3 inches.
  9. Set them in a single layer on a cookie sheet. Drizzle one tablespoon of olive oil and shake pan to coat spears. Bake in oven 7-10 mins.
  10. Let it cool and cut into pieces.
  11. While asparagus is cooking, in a large heavy pan, large enough to hold the pasta, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
  12. Place chicken in the heated oil. When cooked, remove and set aside.
  13. Add two more tablespoons of oil to pan and heat. Add onion and garlic.
  14. Cook onion until clear and soft. Add asparagus, toss lightly. Lower heat so vegetables don’t overcook.
  15. Cut cherry tomatoes in halves and add to mixture.
  16. Add chicken.
  17. Add cooked pasta.
  18. Add the pesto sauce and turn.
  19. Serve with Parmesan cheese.

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Chicken Asparagus and Tomato Pesto Pasta

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Thoughts after cooking:

This was absolutely delicious and way better then the recipe from the book. I could eat this and eat it until I explode.

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For more pasta recipes, go to Angel Hair Pasta with Chicken

For more recipes, go to With the 4th of July Comes Apple Pie

Pasta with Roasted Asparagus, Artichokes, and Pesto

KnitPurlDie

Thoughts prior to cooking:

This recipe comes from the book, Knit. Purl. Die. I’ve always wanted to make it and now I finally have

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Ingredients:

Pasta:

  • 1 lb of pasta
  • 4 Tablespoons of olive oil
  • Salt & pepper
  • Large bunch (1 lb or more) of asparagus
  • 1 Can of artichoke hearts packed in water
  • 1 Medium onion, chopped
  • 2 Garlic cloves, diced
  • 4 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 cup of pesto sauce
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Pesto:

  • 1 Large bunch of fresh basil, about 2 cups of leaves loosely packed
  • 3 to 4 Garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
  • Olive Oil
  • 4 Tablespoons of toasted pine nuts
  • 1/4 cup of freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Directions:

  1. Start with pesto sauce. Remove basil leaves from stems.
  2. Wash leaves and dry them on paper towels. (Make sure the leaves are dry or the recipe will not work.)
  3. In a blender or food processor, mix leaves with chopped garlic and blend.
  4. Drizzle in olive oil.
  5. Add nuts and cheese, mix again, adding more oil if necessary. Sauce should have a pasta consistency.
  6. Refrigerate until needed.
  7. Heat oven to 425°.
  8. Cook pasta to package directions. Set aside.
  9. Wash asparagus and trim ends about 2-3 inches.
  10. Set them in a single layer on a cookie sheet. Drizzle one tablespoon of olive oil and shake pan to coat spears.
  11. Bake in oven 7-10 mins. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  12. Let it cool and cut into pieces.
  13. In a large heavy pan, large enough to hold the pasta, heat a tablespoon of oil.
  14. Drain the artichoke hearts and lay them flat in heated oil. Cook until golden brown and turn once. Heat briefly and set aside.
  15. Add two more tablespoons of oil to pan and heat. Add onion and garlic.
  16. Cook onion until clear and soft. Add asparagus, toss lightly. Lower heat so vegetables don’t overcook.
  17. Add cooked pasta in thirds.
  18. Add about 1/4 cup of pesto sauce and turn.
  19. Add artichokes on top and any other extras.
  20. Serve with Parmesan cheese.

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Pasta with Roasted Asparagus Artichokes and Pesto

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Thoughts after cooking:

I thought it was good, but I didn’t care for the artichoke hearts. I thought it also could be improved with tomatoes and chicken.

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For more pasta recipes  go to Angel Hair Pasta with Chicken

For more recipes, go to On the 4th of July Comes Apple Pie