Kale and Pistachio Pasta

Kale from our garden in pasta with ground pistachios. And an egg.

Here comes another quick 30-minute meal.  I was feeling lazy and didn’t want to go to the supermarket, so I snipped a few leaves of kale from the backyard to add to spaghetti.

Ingredients:

  • 6-8 leaves of kale chopped finely
  • 1/4 cup pistachio
  • garlic
  • 1 dried chile (I used cayenne, but crushed red chili works)
  • half a lemon
  • olive oil
  • salt
  • pepper
  • pasta (I used spaghetti)

Boil water and cook pasta to just before it’s done.  While the pasta is cooking, sautee chopped garlic, crushed chile, and kale leaves in olive oil on low heat.  Salt that mixture to taste, but it’s ok if it’s a little under salted if you’re used salted pistachios like I did. When the pasta is about to be done, add in a few teaspoons more oil and the crushed pistachio to the pan and toss to mix the ingredients.

When the pasta is just about done, turn the pan with the kale’s heat to high, add in the pasta and 1/2 cup pasta cooking liquid.  Stir and toss to distribute everything. This should make a sticky, creamy sauce as it cooks down.  If the pasta is still too chewy for your taste, add more pasta cooking liquid. Salt to taste.  When it’s done, turn off the heat, squeeze half a lemon over it, stir, and it’s done.

For a complete meal, I like topping it with a runny fried egg.

Savory Vegetable Tart

Vegetable pastry with cauliflower, tomatoes, onions, and olives.

Inspired by a delicious vegetable tart I had at Proof a few weeks ago, I made my own version.  I’m not too good in the pastry department, other than baking bread, so I used frozen puff pastry from the store, which turned out great.

Ingredients:

  • frozen puff pastry
  • 1 onion
  • 1 head cauliflower
  • a handful of ripe tomatoes
  • a handful of kalamata olives
  • thyme
  • garlic
  • olive oil, salt, and pepper

Steps for savory vegetable tart:

  1. Set frozen puff pastry out to thaw and preheat oven
  2. Slice the onions and brown them on the stove
  3. While the onions are browning, wash and chop the rest of the vegetables into bite-sized pieces.
  4. Sautee the cauliflower with some garlic and thyme. Salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Roll out the puff pastry and pre-bake for about 5 minutes.
  6. While it’s pre-baking, pit and chop the olives.
  7. Take puff pastry out of the oven and spread the browned onions on top. Then the tomatoes and then the cauliflower. Sprinkle on the chopped olives.
  8. Drizzle a little olive oil onto the tart and pop it back into the oven to bake until golden.

 

Freshly Made Fig Jam

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When life gives you a friend who gives you free reign on picking figs from her back yard, you make fig jam.  After making kumquat marmalade, I figured that fig jam would be easy schmeezy, and it was. It doesn’t even require an extra step of extracting pectin from the fruit.

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Figs are strange fruits that look like alien mouths when you cut them open, but they’re so good when they’re perfectly ripe.

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I enjoyed the jam on top of plain yogurt. Will enjoyed it in a nut butter and jam sandwich.

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Fig Jam Recipe

  • 5 lbs fresh, quartered figs
  • ~5 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1/2 cup Cointreau
  • 1/2 cup Benedictine
  • Juice of 1.5 lemons
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 5 slices of ginger and 5 pods of cardamon (could be left out b/c the liquor is already pretty spiced)

The jam was as easy as de-stemming the figs, quartering them, adding sugar, a pinch of salt, the booze, letting them sit for a little more than an hour, then cooking it down till it’s jammy.  The harder part, which I left for Will was canning them so there’s no chance of botulism.