One sign of a resourceful home cook is using whatever you have in the fridge and whipping up something you actually want to eat. I had various herbs leftover from Thanksgiving that I wanted to use before they went bad. For the parsley, I made a chimichurri sauce (my Argentinean Korean friend would be proud) and from frozen edamame I made pea pesto crostini. Chimichurri is another version of pesto found in Argentina and parts of Latin America. You can top your steak, chicken, fish, pasta, bread, scrambled eggs (my breakfast this morning), etc. Side note: I used my new Cuisinart food processor to make both of these sauces (a steal at 25 bucks – love Costco!).
chimichurri (adapted from Simply Recipes)
1 cup firmly packed flat leaf (aka Italian) parsley, trimmed of thick stems
4 garlic cloves, peeled
2 tsp dried oregano leaves
1/3 cup of olive oil
2 TB red or white wine vinegar
3/4 tsp sea salt or ½ tsp of table salt
¼ tsp of pepper
¼ tsp of red pepper flakes
1. Finely chop the parsley and garlic (or whiz in a food processor)
2. Stir in the oil, vinegar, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Check for seasoning.
3. Serve immediately or refrigerate for up to 5 days. If chilled, bring to room temperature before serving (note: the sauce should look more chunky. I ground it down too finely. Chunky texture is what you wanna aim for).
pea pesto crostini (adapted from Giada at Home)
1 (10oz) package of frozen peas, thawed (I used edamame beans and blanched them)
1 garlic clove, peeled
½ cup of freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
2/3 cup olive oil
8 (1/2 inch thick) slices of a baguette
8 cherry or grape tomatoes halved or one small tomato, diced
half a lemon (optional)
1. In the food processor, whiz the cheese, peas, salt and pepper. Add the 1/3 cup of olive oil and whiz some more. Adjust for seasonings and set aside.
2. Brush both sides of the bread slices with olive oil and toast in a preheated toaster oven (300F) for about 2-3 minutes (watch carefully because they brown quickly).
3. Transfer the bread slices to a plate or platter and spread 1 TB of pesto on each slice and top with 2 halves of cherry/grape tomatoes.
4. Optional: squeeze some fresh lemon juice over the crostinis to add some acid. Test on one and see if you like the flavor (I thought it needed more acid to balance the sweet/creaminess of the pesto). Enjoy!
5. Note: if you don’t want to bother with toasting bread slices, try crackers, like Triscuits.
Fall in Claremont.. can the leaves stay this way all year long?