A midsummer night’s feast

by Steve, August 9th, 2009

squashTonight’s garden feast: capellini with garden fresh pesto, rustic whole wheat bread, and rice salad with fresh green beans, zucchini, basil, and jalepeño. I haven’t made pesto for years, but it’s not hard to remember.


  • fresh basil
  • garlic
  • olive oil
  • some kind of dry, grated cheese (Parmesan works great)
  • pine nuts
  • salt to taste

(You could use some other kind of nuts — walnuts, almonds — but then don’t call it pesto.) We’ve got some old food processor I never use, but it’s perfect for this. Go cut a bunch of basil. I used the equivalent of about four bunches at the store. Rinse the bugs and dust off them, the strip all the leaves (and the tender buds) into the food processor. Add several cloves of garlic, a couple glugs of olive oil and some grated cheese. Puree the heck out it and set it aside in the fridge. Toss with hot pasta later.

Rice Salad with Green Beans

This is a variation on something I used to do with cilantro, but I’m not growing any cilantro this year. I added garbanzo beans to make a complete protein. Make a bunch; keeps well in fridge for several days.

  • a pot of cooked rice, cooled
  • cooked garbanzos, cooled, thawed or from a can, drained (I used one can)
  • 1 small zucchini, grated
  • 1 small jalepeño, minced
  • 1/4 sweet onion, minced
  • a couple fistfuls green beans, par-boiled
  • lemon juice
  • olive oil
  • a small handful fresh basil, minced
  • salt and pepper to taste

Prep beans like you’re going to freeze them: submerge in boiling water one or two minutes, then transfer to ice bath. While beans cool, mix rice, beans, a glug or two of olive oil and a fair amount of lemon juice. Add minced jalepeño, onion, basil, grated zuchinni, salt an pepper. Lemon zest would be great if you’re using fresh lemons. Add the beans, stir well, and set aside in the fridge to marry flavors.

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