Tunisian Fresh Mint Tea with Pine Nuts

August 2nd, 2013 § 0 comments § permalink

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Ingredients

1 cup fresh mint leaves
Honey
Hot water
Pine nuts

Directions

In a tea cup place 4-10 fresh mint leaves and fill with hot water.  Add honey to taste and place 4-8 pine nuts on the top.


Shaved Summer Squash Salad with Chili and Mint and Toasted Pine Nuts

August 11th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 6-9

Ingredients

4-5 Summer Squash, cut into ribbons (using a mandolin)
1 cup fresh mint leaves, chopped
¼ cup olive oil
1 tablespoon lemon zest
2 cloves garlic, chopped superfine
2 tablespoons fresh red chili, deseeded and chopped superfine
4 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted

Directions

In a mixing bowl mix together the squash, garlic, lemon juice and mint. Drizzle olive oil and lemon juice over it and sprinkle with chilies, pine nuts and salt and mix well.

Hand Pounded Pesto

August 6th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Pesto, simply translated means pounded. It is one of the Lingurian regions most prized ingredients and traditionally hand pounded. Today many use food processors or blenders but you can still find devoted traditionalists who hand pound it proving that the taste is still superior with this method due to the increase of released essential oils from not only the basil but the garlic and pine nuts as well. The oils are more readily released when pounded versus cut or chopped. Traditionally a large wooden pestle is used and a marble or granite mortar for the pounding process. (They say the granite on many of the mortars still around is the same granite that Michael Angelo used to carve and sculpt with)

Ingredients

Coarse salt
Garlic (they say the garlic in this region is sweeter as well due to the ocean air influence)
Genovese basil leaves-small deep green and sweet leaves, not too pungent and always young
Pine nuts-from the Lingurian region as well, they claim the taste is sweeter and nuttier and also has a higher oil content than pine nuts in the east or south
Extra virgin olive oil-of course with the local region’s olives which have a milder sweeter flavor than other Italian olive oil
Pecorino, grated finely
Parmesan Reggiano, grated finely

Directions

There are several different paths to get to the final product. We have read about and seen many different ways but the way in which we say most was the following method and order.

The pesto is pounded slowly, first by combining the garlic with the coarse salt until a paste if formed adding a little bit of salt at a time. Next the leaves of the basil are added which are small on the Genovese plant and thus a few at a time are incorporated little by little pounding and mashing until the paste begins to turn green and the basil is broken apart. Pine nuts are added next again crushing and pounding until they are smashed into a paste and all oils are released. The pounding process is slow and methodical and each step has a finished product before moving on to the next step. The extra virgin olive oil is added next and once the cheeses are added no more pounding can be done so when the olive oil stage comes the desired consistency of the paste must be completed before adding cheese. Add the cheese and stir with the pestle.

Heirloom Squash & Chili Mint Salad

July 11th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 2

Ingredients

2 zucchinis, cut into ribbons (using a mandolin)
½ cup fresh mint leaves, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 clove garlic, chopped superfine
1 teaspoon fresh red chili, deseeded and chopped superfine
2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
Salt

Directions

In a mixing bowl mix together the zucchini, garlic, lemon juice and mint. Drizzle olive oil and lemon juice over it and sprinkle with chilies, pine nuts and salt and mix well.

Pasta Basil Pine Nut Pesto over Zucchini

July 4th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Makes 1 cup (sauce)

Ingredients

3 fresh basil leaves, tightly packed
½ cup of spinach
5 tablespoons olive oil
4 tablespoons flax oil
4 tablespoons white miso
½ tablespoon garlic, minced
½ teaspoon salt, use less at first
½ cup pine nuts

Directions

Put the basil and salt in the food processor. Pulse a few times to begin chopping the basil leaves.
Once the basil is chopped fine add the olive oil, flax oil, lemon juice, miso and gralic. Process.
Add the pine nuts and process until the desired consistency is achieved. Do not over process the mixture will become to oily.
The texture should be creamy with a tiny specks of pine nuts through out.
Store in a sealed glass jar in the refrigerator for up to 4 days or freeze the pesto in ice cube trays.

Notes: try replacing the pine nuts with walnuts or brazil nuts

Zucchini Pasta

Ingredients

1 Zucchini

Directions

Take the zucchini, cut the ends off and place it in a spiralizer and spiralize.
Or you can use a vegetable peeler or a mandoline to make noodles.
Place the desired amount of “pasta” on your plate, add the pesto basil sauce and serve.

© Kristin Slaby All rights reserved

Italian Wedding Soup with Spring Greens

May 25th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 6

Ingredients

For chicken pesto meatballs

1 pound ground chicken
1 cups fresh basil, chopped fine
¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped fien
½ cup pine nuts, chopped
8-9 cloves garlic, chopped fine (2 tablespoons reserved for sauce)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cracked pepper
1 teaspoon red chili flakes
1 egg

For the soup

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 yellow onion, chopped small
2 cloves garlic, chopped fien
1 teaspoon red chili flakes
6 cups chicken stock
2 carrots, chopped small
2 celery ribs, chopped small
1 fennel head, chopped small
Parmesan rind
1 cup Ditalini pasta, or other small-shaped pasta
3 cups baby spinach
Salt
Freshly ground pepper

Directions

For chicken pesto meatballs

In a large bowl, using your hands to combine ground chicken, basil, parsley, pine nuts, garlic, salt, pepper, and chili flakes until mixed well. Add the egg, and gently bind together. Roll about a tablespoon of mixture at a time into 1-inch balls and set aside.

For the soup

In a large soup pot over medium heat, add olive oil. Cook onions until soft and translucent, about 5-7 minutes. Add garlic and red chili flakes, cook 1 minute more. Add chicken stock, carrots, celery, fennel, and parmesan rind. Increase heat and bring to a boil, drop in chicken meatballs, lower heat to a simmer and cook, 15 minutes. Add pasta and continue to cook until vegetables are tender, meatballs are cooked through, and pasta is cooked, about 7 minutes. Add spinach and cook, 1 minute more. Season with salt and pepper and serve.

Italian Wedding Soup with Spring Greens and Italian Herb Gremolata

April 25th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 6

INGREDIENTS

For chicken pesto meatballs

1 pound ground chicken
1 cup fresh basil, chopped fine
¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped fine
½ cup pine nuts, chopped
8-9 cloves garlic, chopped fine (2 tablespoons reserved for sauce)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cracked pepper
1 teaspoon red chili flakes
1 egg

For the soup

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 yellow onion, chopped small
2 cloves garlic, chopped fine
1 teaspoon red chili flakes
6 cups chicken stock
2 carrots, chopped small
2 celery ribs, chopped small
1 fennel head, chopped small
Parmesan rind
3 cups baby spinach
1 cup Ditalini pasta, or other small-shaped pasta
Salt
Freshly ground pepper
Italian Herb Gremolata, recipe follows

DIRECTIONS

For chicken pesto meatballs

In a large bowl, using your hands to combine ground chicken, basil, parsley, pine nuts, garlic, salt, pepper, and chili flakes until mixed well. Add the egg, and gently bind together. Form into 1-inch balls. Roll about a tablespoon of the mixture into balls and set aside.

For the soup

In a large soup pot over medium heat, add olive oil. Cook onions until soft and translucent, about 5-7 minutes. Add garlic and red chili flakes, cook 1 minute more. Add chicken stock, carrots, celery fennel, and parmesan rind. Increase heat and bring to a boil, drop in chicken meatballs, lower heat to a simmer and cook, 15 minutes. Add pasta and continue to cook till vegetables are tender, meatballs are cooked through, and pasta is cooked, about 7 minutes. Add spinach and cook, 1 minute more. Season with salt and pepper and serve drizzled with mixed herb gremolata.

Italian Herb Gremolata

Makes approximately ½ cup

INGREDIENTS

¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped fine
2 tablespoons fresh thyme, chopped fine
1 tablespoon fresh oregano, chopped fine
2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped fine
2 tablespoons fresh marjoram, chopped fine
3 cloves garlic, chopped superfine
3 tablespoons lemon zest

Green Garlic Pesto

April 6th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Makes approximately 1 cup

Ingredients

¼ pound of fresh green garlic, dark tips trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
¼ cup fresh basil leaves, stems removed
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 tablespoon lemon juice
¼ cup toasted pine nuts
¼ cup pecorino romano cheese, finely grated
½ cup extra virgin olive oil

Directions

In a blender place the green garlic, basil, lemon zest, lemon juice and pulse a few times until it gets chopped up pretty fine. Add the pine nuts and romano cheese and pulse a few more times. With the blender running pour the olive oil through the top slowly until the pesto reached desired consistency. More for a “looser” pesto & less for a “chunkier” version.

Caramelized Onion & Goat Cheese Flatbread Pizza

March 31st, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

4 servings

Ingredients

3 tablespoons olive oil
1 large yellow onion, sliced
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, leaves chopped
2 flatbreads (whole wheat or spinach)
¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped
4 ounces herbed goat cheese
¼ cup pine nuts, chopped
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 cup fresh arugula
Cooking spray

Directions

Preheat oven to 350ËšF. In a large skillet over medium heat, add 2 tablespoons olive oil. Cook onions and rosemary until onions are soft and caramelized, about 20 minutes.

Place flatbread on a sprayed cookie sheet. Top flatbread with crumbled goat cheese, caramelized onions and pine nuts. Bake for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine arugula, balsamic and 1 tablespoon olive oil and mix well. Season with salt and pepper.

Top flatbread with chopped parsley. Slice flatbread in ½ and serve with the fresh arugula salad.

Recipe courtesy of Robin Simpson

Chicken Pesto Meatballs

November 30th, 2010 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 4

INGREDIENTS

For the Meatballs

1 pound ground chicken
2 cups fresh basil, chopped fine
½ cup pine nuts, chopped
8-9 cloves garlic, chopped fine (2 tablespoons reserved for sauce)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cracked pepper
1 teaspoon red chili flakes
1 egg

For the Sauce

Olive oil
2 tablespoons chopped garlic (reserved from meatballs)
2 (28-ounce) cans diced tomatoes
Salt and pepper

PREPARATION

To assemble meatballs, use hands to squeeze together ground chicken, basil, pine nuts, garlic, salt, pepper, and chili flakes until mixed well. Add the egg, and gently bind together. Form into 1-inch balls.

Heat olive oil in a heavy bottom skillet. Sauté garlic for a few minutes, and add meatballs, and cook until browned on all sides. Add the tomatoes, and let simmer, stirring gently every few minutes for approximately 30 minutes. Serve over cooked linguini.

Sicilian Style Herbed Meatballs

November 30th, 2010 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 6-8

INGREDIENTS

For the Meatballs

1 pound ground beef
1 pound spicy Italian sausage, ground
8-9 cloves garlic, chopped fine (2 tablespoons reserved for sauce)
½ cup fresh parsley, chopped fine (2 tablespoons reserved for sauce)
½ cup fresh basil, chopped fine (2 tablespoons reserved for sauce)
½ cup fresh marjoram, chopped fine (2 tablespoons reserved for sauce)
½ cup fresh oregano, chopped fine (2 tablespoons reserved for sauce)
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon cracked pepper
1-3 teaspoons red chili flakes (for spicier meatballs use 3 teaspoons)
½ cup pine nuts, chopped fine
½ cup currants
½ cup Kashi Whole Grain Nuggets or Grape Nuts (substitute with breadcrumbs)
2 eggs, beaten
Olive oil

For the Sauce

Olive oil
2 tablespoons garlic, chopped fine (reserved from above)
2 tablespoons each fresh parsley, basil, marjoram, and oregano, chopped fine (reserved from above)
2 pounds plum tomatoes, diced fine
½ cup red wine
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon cracked pepper

PREPARATION

To make the meatballs, mix ground beef and ground sausage with garlic, fresh herbs, salt, pepper, and chili flakes.
Use hands to mix well and combine ingredients. Make sure the mixture is well blended. Add the chopped pine nuts, Kashi cereal, and the currants. Again, mix very well using hands. Add the beaten eggs, and mix until all ingredients are well combined and moistened by the eggs. The eggs should cause the mixture to bind together.

Form mixture into about 1 to 1¼-inch balls, and set aside.

In a large and deep heavy bottom pan, heat a few tablespoons of olive oil on high heat. Sauté meatballs in batches until all are well browned. Then, transfer them to another plate with paper towels to absorb any grease.

After all the meatballs are cooked, lower the temperature of the same pan, and add another tablespoons of olive oil if necessary. Sauté the garlic until translucent, about 1 to 2 minutes. Add the fresh herbs and tomatoes, stirring well to loosen the meatball scraps from the bottom of the pan. Add the red wine, salt, and pepper, again stirring to deglaze the pan. Bring to a low boil for about 5 minutes. Turn to low heat, and add the meatballs to the sauce, stirring gently until the meatballs are covered by the tomato mixture. Cook on low temperature for approximately 30 minutes, making sure you stir gently every few minutes being careful not to break apart the meatballs.

Serve over polenta or pasta with freshly grated parmesan cheese!

The alternative to sautéing meatballs is to bake them in a 375°F oven for approximately 30 minutes, until browned and cooked through. Follow the same directions as above for the sauce.

Swiss Chard & Caramelized Onion Lasagna

November 19th, 2010 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 8

INGREDIENTS

2 tablespoons Swiss chard, rinsed with stems removed, chopped
6 yellow onions, sliced thin
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 medium shallot, chopped
4 garlic cloves, chopped fine (Save 1 tablespoon)
5 sprigs thyme, chopped
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
4 cups milk, warmed
½ cup grated Asiago cheese
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
4 tablespoons regular olive oil
1 handful toasted pine nuts
Freshly ground pepper and salt, to taste
2 teaspoons sugar
1 pound pasta sheets

PREPARATION

Preheat oven to 400°F.

For sauce

Melt the butter in a heavy-bottomed saucepan. Add shallots and sweat them until translucent, 3 to 5 minutes. Add garlic and thyme sprigs; cook, 1 minute. Stir in the flour and cook, stirring constantly until the flour cooks and bubbles a bit (don’t let it brown) — about 2 minutes. Add the warm milk, continuing to stir as the sauce thickens. Bring to a boil. Add salt and pepper to taste, lower the heat, and cook, stirring for 2 to 3 minutes more. Add fresh nutmeg and remove from the heat. Strain sauce through fine mesh strainer and then let cool while you prepare lasagna. This constitutes the Béchamel sauce.

For lasagna

In large sauté pan, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat. Add reserved 1 tablespoon garlic and cook, until fragrant, 30 seconds. Add Swiss chard and cook until tender, stirring often, about 5 minutes. Transfer chard to medium bowl, and season with salt and pepper. Set aside. Wipe out skillet, heat remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and cook, stirring, until onions begin to brown all over, about 15 minutes. Sprinkle with sugar and stir. Cook, stirring, until deep amber in color, about 20 minutes more. Set aside. This constitutes the layer of caramelized onions.

Lightly oil a 9 x 13-inch baking dish or coat with nonstick cooking spray. Coat bottom of prepared dish with ½ cup of sauce. Layer bottom with a single layer of noodles. Spread half the chard over the noodles. Add another layer of noodles, arrange caramelized onions on top, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Spread another ½ cup sauce over all. Add another layer of noodles, followed by the remaining chard mixture. Finish with remaining noodles and sauce. Sprinkle with Asiago cheese.

Loosely cover baking dish with aluminum foil. Bake lasagna for 30 minutes. Uncover, bake 10 to 15 minutes more, or until lightly browned and bubbling. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

Grilled Chicken with Lemon Thyme Asiago Pesto

October 11th, 2010 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 6

INGREDIENTS

6 each chicken breasts, pounded flat
Zest and juice of 2 lemons
Salt and pepper
Lemon thyme Asiago pesto, recipe below

PREPARATION

Marinate chicken breasts in lemon juice, zest, salt and pepper for approximately 30 minutes.
Grill and drizzle with lemon thyme Asiago pesto.
Serve immediately.

Lemon Thyme Asiago Pesto

Makes 1 ½ cups pesto

INGREDIENTS

4 garlic cloves
½ cup pine nuts
2 to 3 cups chopped fresh lemon thyme
⅔ cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon lemon zest
Juice of 1 lemon
½ cup grated Asiago cheese
Salt and pepper

PREPARATION

Mix all ingredients with a hand held mixer or food processor until smooth.

Grilled Chicken with Lemon Thyme Asiago Pesto

Zuchinni Carpaccio With Chili Oilmint and Toasted Pine Nuts

June 3rd, 2010 § 0 comments § permalink

INGREDIENTS

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5 medium zucchini, sliced paper thin in ribbons
½ cup mint
1 teaspoon red chili flakes
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
¼ cup lemon juice
½ cup pine nuts, toasted
salt

PREPARATION

Place all ingredients in a medium mixing bowl and mix well. Season with salt.  Arrange ribbons and a nice platter and serve.

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