It seems I’m really getting into the swing of vegetarian cooking, several meals a week have been purely vegetable based lately and I have yet to hear a complaint from Mr Good. That must mean I’m doing something right.
Of the vegetarian meals from the last week it was the Basil Pesto Spaghetti that most lived up to the spirit of Tuesday Night Vego (minus the imported pine nuts). The basil used was the last big harvest from my garden, there is now only a few stray leaves left on the plants and I suspect that will be it for the season. Add some organic garlic cloves from the Slow Food market, some good Australian olive oil (I like buying the Mt Zero olive oil if I can as I grew up in that area), parmesan, and pine nuts to the food processor and whizz. It takes literally only a few minutes to prepare. Stir it through cooked pasta, grate on a little more parmesan and cracked pepper to taste and you have a delicious fresh, tastes-like-summer dish to enjoy on these cold late Autumn days. This is absolutely the perfect quick, satisfying vegetarian meal, it’s done even before the kids have time to start whining to be fed – an after work/childcare saviour dish.
The best thing about pesto is its versatility. It’s perhaps not authentically Italian, but I find both the nuts and the herb can be changed and give you a different, but equally yummy sauce or dip. The pine nuts (which can get expensive) could be swapped for walnuts, cashews or even macadamias. The basil could be replaced by parsley, baby spinach or something different like sun dried tomatoes. Playing around with different combinations is fun and means pesto can be enjoyed even if basil isn’t in abundance.
For other vego options pop over to the Witches Kitchen.