Let's Dish With Linda Lou

Taste The Love

Super Bowl L

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Well… my team is going to the Super Bowl L and I’m so excited. I pulled out all the stops at home for this one. I made all our favorite football dishes.  As you know my daughter, Melissa lives in the Bay Area.

It was during media week and somehow she got herself into those restricted areas to get some awesome photos. I’m pretty sure she did that just for me. You’re the best Melissa, always thinking about mom!

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I’m feeling excited, nervous, and so proud of my team! Go Denver!!!!

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Pestos and Tapenades

Pestos And Tapanades

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It’s a meat-free day today at my house. Anything you can spread over grilled and/or toasted bread is delicious.

Pesto doesn’t have to be made with just basil anymore. You can substitute arugula or spinach, you can add walnuts or pistachios. The possibilities are endless. Today I’m going to tap into my Hanging Organic Herb Garden to add a lot of freshness to my Pestos And Tapenades.

The difference between a Pesto and a Tapenade is generally Tapenades are olive-based… yes there are olives in certain Pestos.

In the pictures above I’ve made a Roasted Piquillo Pepper Pesto, a Pea With Fresh Mint Pesto, and Artichoke Pesto, and a Kalamata Olive With Cannellini Bean Tapenade.

I love to shake things up by using different kinds of ingredients. For example; roasted red peppers, artichokes, peas, Cannellini beans, Kalamata olives, or Ricotta cheese, mix in nuts and fresh herbs.

Parmigiano- Reggiano cheese, fresh lemon juice, and a great Extra Virgin Olive Oil are key in making a great pesto or Tapenade. Let’s not forget about the nuts. Traditionally pine nuts are what’s used, not today, it’s pistachios. I even used a variety of herbs like basil, chives, mint, and Italian flat-leaf parsley. I say let your imagination go wild!  Then spread it on grilled bread.

In the next section, is my recipe for the Roasted Piquillo Pepper Pesto. Recipes may vary from one pesto to another, some tend to be thicker than others. A secret I use to thicken certain Pesto recipes is by adding a small amount of Cannellini Beans. They add creaminess and give great texture to the Pesto or Tapenade.

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Sweet Basil (2)

mint

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Flat Leaf Italian Parsley

Roasted Red Peppers

Piquillo Peppers (2)

 

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Ciabatta

Toasted Ciabatta Bread

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Pestos And Tapenades

 

 

 

 

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 12 to 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Equipment: 10-cup food Processor, rimmed baking sheet pan, chef’s knife, small and large mixing bowls

Ingredients For Roasted Piquillo Pepper Pesto:
1 (12-ounce) jar of roasted Piquillo peppers, drained (substitute roasted red peppers)
1/4 cup of cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1/4 cup of Pistachios
1/4 cup of Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, freshly grated
1 small clove of peeled garlic
2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon of Kosher salt
1/2 a teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon of basil leaves, roughly chopped
1/4 cup of *E.V.O.O.
1 loaf of Ciabatta (substitute baguette)

Directions:
Preheat oven to 375-degrees F.

Slice the Ciabatta bread at a 45-degree angle into 1/2-inch thick slices. Arrange the bread in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet pan. Brush the top surface of each slice of Ciabatta lightly with olive oil. Sprinkle with Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste. Place into the oven on the center rack. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes or until the bread is golden. Take the baking sheet out of the oven and let the toast cool slightly before adding the toppings.

Start processing the nuts ( Pistachios) garlic and the herb of choice first. You can see this in the pictures above. Once this has been processed, add in the main ingredients. In this case, the drained and rinsed roasted Piquillo peppers, Cannellini beans, fresh lemon juice, Kosher salt, and pepper.

Next, through the feed tube, at the top, drizzle in the *E.V.O.O. slowly. This will allow you to control the consistency of the pesto as it’s being processed, and you can adjust the amount accordingly.

Finally, add the grated cheese. The reason I do it this way, is so the cheese doesn’t get too hot from that blade doing all this processing and change the integrity of the cheese. I only pulse the cheese through the mix just until it’s mixed through.

This is the method I use when making any type of pesto. I also want to mention, using Cannellini beans gives extra body to the pesto without changing the flavor.

*E.V.O.O. is Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

My Hanging Organic Herb Garden And Summertime Flowers

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Roasted Piquillo Pepper And Edamame Pestos

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When I make any type of pesto, whether it’s the original basil pesto or pesto made with different ingredients, they’re all so delicious. In this post, I’m making two identical pestos but changing up the star ingredient. The first one is my Roasted Piquillo Pepper Pesto, the second is an Edamame Pesto.

Crostini, are what’s known as little slices of grilled bread. The choice of bread is just as important as the toppings you put on them. Ciabatta bread I find is the best bread to use.

I want to talk a little about Hominy. Hominy is just whole corn kernels that have been soaked in a lime solution to soften the tough outer hulls. The second ingredient I love to add to pesto is Cannellini beans.

I’m incorporating these ingredients in my pestos for extra body and texture. First, because it doesn’t overpower the flavors that I’m highlighting, and second, they’re a staple in my pantry.

With the exception of the star ingredients, Edamame, and the Roasted Piquillo Pepper both pestos contain all of the same ingredients.

First, I’m starting with the Roasted Piquillo Pepper Pesto.

Ciabatta

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Toasted Ciabatta Bread

Roasted Red Peppers

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Piquillo Peppers (2)

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Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Equipment: food processor, 2 rimmed baking sheet pans

Ingredients:
1 cup of Roasted Piquillo peppers
1/2 cup of drained and rinsed cannellini beans
1/2 cup hominy, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup Cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
juice of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
1 clove of peeled garlic, roughly chopped
1/4 cup of chopped walnuts
1 teaspoon of Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon of freshly cracked black pepper
1/3 cup of *E.V.O.O.
1/3 cup of grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
1 loaf of Ciabatta bread (yields 16 slices)

Ingredients:
1 cup Edamame, shelled
1/2 cup of drained and rinsed cannellini beans
1/2 cup hominy, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup Cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
juice of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
1 clove of peeled garlic, roughly chopped
1/4 cup of chopped walnuts
1 teaspoon of Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon of freshly cracked black pepper
1/3 cup of *E.V.O.O.
1/3 cup of grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

Directions For Ciabatta Bread:
Preheat oven to 375-degrees F.

Slice the Ciabatta bread at a 45-degree angle into 1/2 -inch thick slices. Arrange the bread in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Brush the top surface of each slice of Ciabatta lightly with olive oil. Sprinkle with Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper. Place into the oven on the center rack. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the bread is golden. Take the baking sheet out of the oven and let the toast cool slightly before adding the toppings.

Directions:
Start with adding the walnuts to the food processor first, giving them a head start on getting ground up. Pulse the walnuts a few times. Next, add the Roasted Piquillo Peppers, or the shelled Edamame, Cannellini beans, Hominy, roughly chopped garlic, lemon juice, crushed red pepper flakes, Kosher salt, and freshly cracked black pepper into a food processor. Pulse until everything just purèed. Though the feeding tube, add *E.V.O.O. until pesto comes together as seen above. Last, add the freshly grated cheese and then give it a couple more pulses just until the cheese is combined. Give the pesto a quick taste to make sure the seasoning is just right.

Transfer the pesto to a porcelain serving bowl. Drizzle a little *E.V.O.O. over the top of the finished pesto before serving.

*E.V.O.O. is extra virgin olive oil.

 

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