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Posts tagged “Pinons

Fairy Tale Purple Pesto

Purple Pesto

My mother grows both green and purple basil every year. This year she gave me a purple basil plant. Mine grew to about 6 inches tall, enough to snip off a couple leaves or sprigs here and there to season a dish. Her basil plant grew to the size of a bush.

If you don’t trim basil plants, they will go to seed and die, having finished their purpose in life. If you trim them, they grow bigger. I went out to trim Mom’s basil plants for her and came in with quite enough basil to make pesto. So I put it in a bag, stuck it in my cooler, brought it home and decided to make purple pesto.

In my box of goodies from the garden, I also had some of these pretty purple Fairy tale eggplant, and since it IS purple, I thought that would be lovely in the pesto. As I was blending up the pesto, it was a bit too thick, so I was looking for a liquid to thin it so that I didn’t have to add too much oil (I want my pesto to be lower in fat too!) and wouldn’t ruin the color. It just so happens I had a bottle of red wine sitting there, so I added a bit of wine too.

I’m freezing my purple pesto for safe keeping. I have plans in my mind to make purple pizzas and purple pasta, purple pesto salad dressings and purple pesto potatoes.

Have I mentioned that my favorite color is purple?

Fairy tale Purple Pesto

Purple Pesto

  • 6 cups of purple basil leaves
  • 1/3 cup pinons (pine nuts)
  • 1/3 cup almonds
  • 1 cup shredded asiago cheese
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 5 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • 1 small fairy tale eggplant, roasted (or 1/2 cup of a larger eggplant)
  • 1/3 cup dry red wine

Slice the eggplant lengthwise, set it on a baking sheet and roast it in the oven (or toaster oven) at 350 for about 10 minutes or until it’s tender. Cut it up into chunks and measure it. You should have about 1/2 cup of eggplant.

In a blender or food processor, blend up all the ingredients until you have a fine puree. Whatever you are not going to use immediately, freeze in small containers or ice cube trays.

Use this purple pesto just like you would any other pesto: mix with some pasta water and toss with pasta, spread it on pizza or sandwiches or little toasts.

Fairy Tale Purple Pesto

This recipe was shared at Talent Show Tuesday and Cast Party Wednesday.


Cucumber Pesto Buttermilk Salad

Cucumber Buttermilk Pesto Salad with Feta & Pinons

This is one of those salads that came to me in the middle of the night.  I was trying to think of something different to do with cucumbers beyond the regular cucumber salads … hadn’t come up with anything, but then about 3 a.m., I woke up and thought “Pesto! Pesto would be awesome on cucumbers!” So yeah, I guess I never stop thinking about food, even when I’m sleeping.

I have a bunch of English cucumbers my mom gave me from her garden. They are the BEST cucumbers, so crunchy and sweet, tiny little seeds that are never too big, and no sharp bitter taste at all. She had brought in a box of them and said to me “this is today’s pick … tomorrow we will have another bunch like this. So you may as well take them all.”

I found a bit of buttermilk in my fridge and thought I should use that up, so I mixed it with the pesto along with some yogurt to make the dressing. Together they made this lovely creamy blend that made me smile. I had actually intended to put some chickpeas in this salad as well, but I completely forgot about them until the salad was gone. Oh well, the chickpeas will go into something else!

Cucumber Buttermilk Pesto Salad

Cucumber Pesto Buttermilk Salad

with Tomato, Feta Cheese and Pinons

Salad:

  • 2  cups chopped English cucumber (or other fresh garden cucumber … )
  • 1  cup cherry tomatoes, halved, or chopped fresh tomato
  • Feta cheese crumbles
  • Pinons, toasted
  • Fresh basil leaves, for garnish (if desired)

Dressing:

  • 2 Tablespoons buttermilk
  • 2 Tablespoons nonfat plain yogurt
  • 2 Tablespoons pesto (my recipe is here)

Chop up the cucumber and toss them in a bowl with the tomatoes, saving a few tomatoes for garnish on top of the salad. Mix up the buttermilk, yogurt and pesto till smooth and then toss the cucumber/tomato mixture with enough dressing to just coat the vegies. Top with feta cheese crumbles, pinons, the reserved tomatoes and fresh basil leaves and serve.

Cucumber Buttermilk Pesto Salad

This recipe was shared at Fit & Fabulous FridaysSummer Salad Sundays and Raw Food Recipes.


Pesto Shrimp Mini-Pizzas

with fresh grape tomatoes, goat cheese & pinons

Pesto Shrimp Mini Pizzas with Goat Cheese & Pinons

If I had to choose one favorite pizza topping, this would be it. Shrimp, pesto, and goat cheese with fresh tomato and pinons are such an elegant combination of flavors, and if you have pizza crusts (or english muffins!) and pesto on hand, they are so quick and simple to put together.

I made these little mini-pizza crusts for the party last weekend, but we didn’t actually eat them at the party. I served some to my friends at the “after-the-party” party, though, and they were very well received. And now my daughter is loving having the little mini-crusts on hand. I’ve made her mini-pizzas for dinner a couple times this week already. I think this mini pizza craze might become a regular thing at my house. They are even better than the individual-sized crusts I normally make because they’re minis! Small, bite-sized food is just so fun.

When the basil is rampant, I make pesto & freeze it so I always have some on hand. I pretty much always have some pizza crusts in the freezer too.

Pesto Shrimp Mini Pizzas with Grape Tomatoes, Goat Cheese & Pinons

Pesto Shrimp Mini Pizzas with Grape Tomatoes, Goat Cheese & Pinons

The great thing about these pizzas is you can pre-make everything and keep it in the freezer, so you can have little gourmet pizzas on the table in no time.

  • Pre-made mini pizza crusts (recipe below) or English muffins … or a regular-sized pizza crust if you want to make this as a bigger pizza. You could certainly do this as a grilled pizza too …
  • Pesto (my pesto recipe is here)
  • Crumbled goat cheese
  • Frozen, pre-cooked shrimp, thawed
  • Fresh cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
  • Pinons (pine nuts)

Spread the pizza crusts with pesto and crumbled goat cheese. Top with lots of shrimp and mini tomato halves. Sprinkle with pinons. Bake at 400 for about 10 – 12 minutes or until the nuts are toasted and light brown and the pizzas are good and hot.

Pesto Shrimp Mini Pizzas with Tomato, Goat Cheese, and Pinons

Beer Pizza Crusts

  • 1 cup beer (I used Leinenkugel Sunset Wheat this time)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups bread flour
  • 1 cup unbleached white whole wheat flour
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons yeast
  • 2 teaspoons Italian Seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

Put all ingredients into the bread machine and put it on the dough setting. When the dough is done, divide it into 24 balls of roughly equal size. I did this by cutting the dough in half, then cutting each one in half again, then each piece into three and then cutting each of those into half. Use cornmeal on your work surface to keep the balls from sticking. Shape each ball into a disc shape, set on a flat pizza peel or cutting board dusted with cornmeal, cover with a towel and let rest about 5 – 10 minutes. Then gently stretch each one into a slightly larger disc, cover and let rest until they have risen to the desired size. Bake at 425 for about 10 minutes or until a light golden brown in color. You can throw them in a bag and freeze them at this point and pull them out as needed for snacks or dinner.

This recipe was featured at Carrie’s Experimental Kitchen Seafood Frenzy Fridays.

This recipe was shared at Thursday’s TreasuresTastetastic Thursday, KM’s Seafood BloghopFoodie Fridays, and Manic Monday.


Mulberry, Goat Cheese & Avocado Salad

on Mixed Greens with Ginger Grapefruit Vinaigrette

Mulberry, Goat Cheese & Avocado Salad with Pinons & Goat Cheese

Hey guess what?  I’m guest posting on Carrie’s Experimental Kitchen today … it’s a yummy salad I made with my mulberries.

Mulberry, Goat Cheese & Avocado Salad on Mixed Greens with Pine Nuts & a Ginger Grapefruit Vinaigrette

Go on over to Carrie’s blog and check it out!

Mulberry, Goat Cheese & Avocado Salad on Mixed Greens with Pine Nuts & a Ginger Grapefruit Vinaigrette

This recipe was shared at Fit & Fabulous FridaysFoodie Friends Friday, EveryDay Mom’s Meals and Summer Salad Sunday.


Red, White, & Blueberry Salad

with Goat Cheese, Pinons, and a Honey Ginger Lime Yogurt Dressing

Red, White & Blueberry Salad with Goat Cheese & Toasted Pinons

My foodie friend Justine over at Full Belly Sisters has been making red, white and blue foods like crazy lately … which got me thinking … I need to make a red, white and blue salad! It’s been in my head for a week, waiting to come to life. I’m so glad I finally took time to make it today (even though my son was upset with me for making something for myself since we had agreed to go out for lunch today … hey, it’s just a salad!)

Besides being just the right colors for the 4th of July, it’s got just the right mix of sweet, creamy, tangy and crunchy to make a super-delicious salad. Tangy goat cheese pairs so well with berries, sweet onions kick up the flavor just slightly, the pinons add a soft crunch and a slight sweet nutty flavor, and the lime and ginger yogurt dressing takes it over the top.

Red, White & Blueberry Salad with Goat Cheese and Toasted Pinons

And you know what else? Before eating this salad, I felt tired and run down. But AFTER eating this delectable salad, my body felt so refreshed, revived, ready to go! Besides, all those gorgeous colors are a feast for the eyes …

Red, White & Blueberry Salad

with Goat Cheese, Pinons, and a Honey Ginger Lime Yogurt Dressing

  • Mixed Greens
  • Fresh Strawberries, washed and sliced
  • Fresh Sweet Blueberries, washed
  • Sweet onion, sliced  and roughly chopped
  • Pinon nuts and/or almond slices, lightly toasted
  • Goat cheese crumbles
  • Honey Ginger Lime Yogurt Salad Dressing (recipe below0
Fill the bowl most of the way full of mixed greens. Arrange/tuck a bunch of sliced strawberries and fresh whole blueberries amongst the greens, then sprinkle on the nuts and crumbles of goat cheese . Drizzle with the dressing and serve.

Red, White & Blueberry Salad with Goat Cheese and Toasted Pinons

Honey Ginger Lime Yogurt Salad Dressing

  • 1/2 cup fat-free plain yogurt
  • 4 teaspoons of honey
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
  • Juice of 1/2 lime

In a small bowl, whisk all of the ingredients together until they are well mixed. Keep any leftover dressing in a covered container in the fridge.

Red, White, and Blueberry Salad with Goat Cheese & Toasted Pinons

By the way, Justine at Full Belly Sisters made a Red, White & Blue Salad too! Go check out her version.

This recipe was shared at Patriotic Potluck, Summer Salad SundaysScrumptious SundaysManic Mondays and Trick or Treat Tuesdays.


Peach Berry Prosciutto Pesto Pizza

with Gorgonzola, Mozzarella & Havarti Cheeses

Peach Berry Prosciutto Pesto Pizza

My friends told me about this Peach Pizza they’ve been making that they just LOVE … so of course I had to try it. Last night the crazy wind we’ve been having finally died down enough to light up the grill so my daughter and I decided we should grill up some pizza.

Peach Berry Prosciutto Pesto Pizza

Peach Berry Prosciutto Pesto Pizza

Adapted from Eating Well

  • Pizza dough (I included my recipe below)

Toppings (per individual-sized pizza)

  • 1/4 cup of Gorgonzola cheese crumbles
  • 1/4 cup of shredded Havarti cheese
  • 1/3 cup Mozzarella cheese
  • 1 fresh peach (or nectarine), sliced
  • Thinly sliced sweet onion
  • A couple tablespoons of pesto (store-bought or homemade … my recipe for pesto is here)
  • 1 thin slice of prosciutto, torn into pieces
  • A small handful of berries (I used mulberries, but I think blueberries would be beautiful with this too)
  • 1 – 2 Tablespoons pinons (pine nuts)

For garnish/topping after cooking:

  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Fresh basil leaves

Directions:

  1. Prepare the pizza dough and light up the grill.
  2. Mix the cheeses together in a bowl and prepare/gather the rest of the toppings and place them close to the grill so you’re ready to top the pizza crust as soon as the first side is cooked.
  3. If you’re using a charcoal grill, arrange the coals and make a hot spot for the pizza crusts to cook. I piled the coals up on one side of the grill, leaving the other side empty to make a cooler spot for the toppings to melt. (On a gas grill, turn one area up to high and another on low.)
  4. Slide one of the prepared crusts onto the hot side of the grill, cover and let cook for 5-10 minutes, checking it periodically. (I was busy with other stuff and charred the bottom a little … oops! Shhh … don’t tell anyone, maybe they won’t notice …)
  5. Once the crust is browned on the bottom, using a spatula, flip the crust over onto the cool side of the grill so the “raw” side is down. Spread the crust with pesto, sprinkle with most of the cheese, arrange the other toppings on there, then add a bit more cheese on top.
  6. Cover and let cook another 5 – 10 minutes or until the cheese is melted. Remove from the grill (slide it onto a pizza pan or cutting board), sprinkle with some fresh basil leaves and a little drizzle of balsamic vinegar (if you like), cut into slices and enjoy!

Peach Berry Prosciutto Pesto Pizza

Italian Tomato Pizza Crust

Using tomato juice as the liquid gives the crusts a beautiful orange color.

  • 1 cup tomato juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups bread flour
  • 1 cup unbleached white whole wheat flour
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons yeast
  • 2 teaspoons Italian Seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

Put all ingredients into the bread machine and put it on the dough setting. When the dough is done, divide it into four balls. Shape each ball into a disc shape, cover with a towel and let rest about 5 – 10 minutes. On a clean, flat surface sprinkled with cornmeal, roll out the dough for your crust with a rolling pin. Cover the crusts with a towel until you’re ready to cook them.

This recipe was shared at Newlyweds Recipe Linky, Cast Party Wednesday, Thursday’s Treasures and Tastetastic Thursday.


Rosemary Cucumber Barley Lentil Salad

Rosemary Cucumber Barley Lentil Salad

The idea of a chopped cucumber salad with rosemary popped into my head the other day. I had some cucumber I bought for my daughter, but she hasn’t shown much interest in eating them lately, so I decided to go ahead and use them up. I cooked up some barley and red lentils to go with it and they took over and outnumbered the cucumbers, but all in all, I was very pleased with the results. Barley is something I usually think of putting in soups, but I thought it would be fun to try it in a salad. It’s a very healthy grain, full of fiber.

Dressed with lemon juice and olive oil and seasoned with a little Moroccan seasoning and some cumin, it turned out to be quite a nice salad. Great for lunch or as a nice side dish to serve with fish or meat.

Rosemary Cucumber Barley Lentil Salad

  • 1/2 cup dry barley
  • 1/2 cup dry lentils (you can use any color: I chose red ones)
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced and chopped cucumber
  • 1/2 cup chopped sweet onion (like a Vidalia)
  • 1/4 cup parsley
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onion
  • Zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Moroccan seasoning (I used some I purchased from Mystic Blue Spice Company, but if you are in a pinch, there is a recipe for making your own here)
  • 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt & freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • For garnish: About 2 Tablespoons toasted pinons (pine nuts), lemon slice(s) & fresh parsley leaves

Directions:

  1. Cook the barley and lentils (in separate pots) according to package directions.
  2. While they are cooking, chop the cucumber and onion and gather the herbs.
  3. Zest and juice the lemon into a small bowl. Add the garlic, rosemary, cumin and Moroccan seasoning, then whisk in the olive oil.
  4. In a larger bowl, mix the cooked barley and lentils, the cucumber, onion, parsley and green onion, then drizzle on the dressing and stir to mix. Add salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with fresh lemon slice(s), toasted pine nuts and some fresh parsley leaves. Serve hot or cold. It’s good both ways.

Rosemary Cucumber Barley Lentil Salad

This recipe was shared at Newlyweds Recipe Linky, Full Plate Thursday, Fit & Fabulous Fridays, and Summer Salad Sundays.


Asparagus on Green Garlic Crostini

Asparagus on Green Garlic Crostini

It’s spring! Everything is turning green … that means it’s time for my favorite spring vegetables. Like asparagus. And spinach. I’m in heaven whenever I can have fresh asparagus and spinach from the garden.

And this year I have one more wonderful thing to harvest from the “garden” … garlic. I snagged a couple clumps of garlic from my mom and dad’s garden and planted them in a pot to bring home. Now I have a big mess of delicious fresh garlic ready anytime I want them. I love that. I love garlic.

Asparagus on Green Garlic Crostini

And I really, really love these little green toasts. Aren’t they pretty?

Asparagus on Green Garlic Crostini

Asparagus on Green Garlic Crostini

Inspired by the Full Belly Sisters’ Green Grilled Cheese Sandwich

  • 15 – 20 fresh asparagus spears
  • 6 fresh cloves of garlic (the whole plant … complete with scapes … if you don’t have fresh garlic, you can substitute garlic cloves
  • 2 cups packed full of fresh spinach leaves
  • 1 avocado, peeled and pitted
  • 1 oz light cream cheese
  • French bread slices
  • Freshly shredded parmesan cheese
  • Pinon nuts (pine nuts)

Directions:

  1. Wash the asparagus and set it on a baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray. Roast in the oven at 450 for about 5 – 7 minutes or until the asparagus is barely crisp tender (and still bright green). Chop into about 1 to 2 inch slices. Set aside.
  2. Clean the garlic, chop off the roots and any bad peel, and toss it into a handi chopper or food processor with the fresh spinach leaves. Whir until it’s all chopped fine.
  3. Mash the avocado in a bowl, then cream in the cream cheese to make a smooth blend.
  4. Stir the chopped spinach & garlic into the avocado/cream cheese to make a wonderful luscious green paste.
  5. Lightly toast the french bread slices, then spread each toast with a liberal amount of the pretty green creamy paste.
  6. Arrange the asparagus on the toasts (I arranged them in a fan shape … not that you can really tell …), then sprinkle lightly with parmesan and a few pinon nuts.
  7. Put the toasts on a baking sheet and bake at 450 for about 5 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the pinons are lightly toasted.
  8. Serve immediately.

Asparagus on Green Garlic Crostini

This recipe was shared at Newlyweds Recipe LinkyTastetastic Thursdays, and Fit & Fabulous Fridays.


A Chef Salad in Stripes

with Avocado Ranch Salad Dressing

A Chef Salad in Stripes

I ran across a beautiful vegan cobb salad the other day and it made me think: why don’t I ever do a salad in stripes? My salads are always so random and scattered … couldn’t we try a nice organized salad for a change? Something in nice straight lines.

As a child, I remember looking at a cobb salad on the menu and thinking: why would anyone bother to go to all that trouble of arranging all that stuff in straight lines … you’re just going to mix it all up together when you eat it, right? So what’s the point?

Well, I don’t suppose there really is a point. Maybe it’s just a different way of looking at salad. I mean, a stripey salad can be horizontal.

A Chef Salad in Stripes

Or it can be vertical:

A Chef Salad in Stripes

Putting it all in nice straight lines makes it look all grown-up and sophisticated. I think I finally get it … it’s a grown-up way to play with your food.

A Chef Salad in Stripes

Make a nice bed of spinach for your salad. Add a line of each of the other ingredients in nice, straight lines. Try not to curse the spinach for not being nice and flat. That’s the challenge of this salad, making straight lines despite the random ups and downs of the spinach. Hmm, kind of like life …

A Chef Salad in Stripes

I think my favorite way to look at this salad is to tilt it a bit and make it diagonal. And then mix it all up into a big mess, drizzle with Avocado Ranch Salad Dressing … and eat it.

This recipe was shared at Totally Tasty Tuesdays and Newlyweds Recipe Linky.


Tulip & Violet Salad with Salmon Cucumber Toasts

a.k.a., Tiptoe through the Tulips with Me Salad

Tulip & Wild Violet Salad with Salmon Blue Cheese Cucumber Toast

I have been wondering what beautiful blossoms in my yard are edible? There must be something besides dandelions and wild violets …

So I did a little research and it turns out there is a reason the deer chomp off the tulip blossoms so quickly … they’re delicious! Tulips have a faint taste sort of like asparagus, but with a lighter, more flowery taste.

Tulip & Wild Violet Salad with Salmon Blue Cheese Cucumber Toast

I have planted a lot of tulips, but I don’t get to see very many of my sweet tulip blossoms, thanks to the deer that visit my yard so frequently. I welcome the deer as a magical presence in my life … and at the same time I get frustrated with them for killing my trees, eating all my tulips, lilies, strawberries, hostas, apple and apricot trees (will I EVER have apples?) … it’s very hard to garden with deer around.

I had just three surviving tulip flowers  … I figured I had better pick them before the deer got them.

Please do not try eating your tulips if you use chemicals on your tulips or on your lawn anywhere near your precious tulips.

Tulip & Wild Violet Salad with Salmon Cucumber Toast

Tulip & Wild Violet Salad with Blue Cheese and Pinons

  1. Find some greens. I snipped some “volunteer” greens from my garden. Make a bed of greens on your salad plate or bowl.
  2. Arrange tulip petals and wild violet greens and blossoms (whatever you have) on top of your greens.  (Just please make sure there aren’t any nasty lawn chemicals on your flowers!)
  3. Sprinkle your beautiful salad with crumbled blue cheese and toasted pine nuts (pinons) … or other nuts of your choosing.
  4. Drizzle with your favorite vinaigrette. I was sure I had some berry vinaigrette in my fridge, but I couldn’t find it and settled for my maple cranberry vinaigrette. It worked out beautifully anyway.

Salmon Cucumber Toasts

  • French bread
  • 1 oz. light cream cheese
  • 1 tablespoon or so of blue cheese
  • A sprig of fresh dill, snipped
  • Garlic scapes, snipped … or a bit of fresh garlic, chopped
  • A bit of finely chopped onion … or green onion
  • A small fillet of salmon, grilled or smoked
  • Cucumber slices and basil leaves, for the top

Directions:

  1. Toast the french bread lightly
  2. Mix the cream cheese, blue cheese, scapes or garlic, onion, dill and salmon in a small bowl till mixed well.
  3. Spread the french bread toast with the cheese mixture and top with cucumber slices and basil leaves.

Tulip & Wild Violet Salad with Salmon Cucumber Toast

This recipe was shared at Full Plate Thursdays, Tastetastic Thursdays, Katherine Martinelli’s Easter Blog Hop, Fit & Fabulous FridaysEveryday Mom’s Meals and Totally Tasty Tuesdays.


Cannellini Bean Hummus with Feta & Oregano

Cannellini Bean Hummus with Feta Cheese and Oregano

I have a not-so-secret fascination with hummus. That creamy garlicky lemony dip with a kick of tahini … ah it is one of my very favorite foods. I snack on it, spread it on my sandwiches, would probably bathe in it if I had enough of it! Well, no, that would be a waste. Because I would want to eat every. last. little. bit. I would be licking the tub. That would not be pretty.

That is how much I love hummus. I have seen hummus made with cannellini beans instead of chickpeas, so I had to give that a whirl. Oh, it turned out delicious. Too bad it is already gone … I didn’t make enough! So I recommend you double the recipe. Or maybe triple it? I SO need to make some more.

Cannellini Hummus with Feta and Oregano

  • 1 c. cooked cannellini beans
  • 1 t. olive oil
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • A bit of lemon zest
  • Juice from 1/2 a lemon
  • 2 T. crumbled feta cheese
  • A few sprigs of fresh oregano or 1/2 t. dried oregano
  • 2 T. pinon nuts
  • A few drops of sesame oil

Blend all ingredients in a blender or food processor till smooth. Add a little water if you need to for getting it to blend smooth. Serve with toasted pita chips.

Cannellini Hummus with Feta and Oregano

How to toast pitas into chips:

Spray a baking pan with cooking spray. Cut the pitas into wedges and arrange in a single layer on the pan. Spray liberally with cooking spray. Bake at 400 degrees for about 10 minutes or until lightly brown and crisp.

Cannellini Bean Hummus with Feta Cheese and Oregano


A Simple Sunday Meal for a Very Tired Camper

Hummus Feta Tomato Goat Cheese Pinon Pita

We went camping at a folk festival this weekend. This is something I haven’t done in years, so I had forgotten what it’s like to live without computers, internet, blogging, twitter, facebook, electricity, hot water … even cell phone coverage was iffy and all our phones worked so hard trying to find a signal they all went dead. We were only there maybe 24 hours, but it feels much longer than that (and at the same time shorter? if that makes any sense), almost like we left the planet or entered a different dimension.

I remembered what it’s like to eat cold food out of the cooler, cook sausages and hot dogs on sticks over a hot fire, eat cereal out of a plastic cup, stay up late just talking by the fire, hike in the woods, stare up at the stars, heat water on a campstove for tea–and all of this was set to the beautiful sounds of some amazingly talented musicians singing late late into the night. We could hear them from our campsite. I have no idea how long they kept playing … they were still singing long after we crashed I bet.

We ate good of course …  we had Basil Lime pesto (my friend’s version!) over cold bowtie pasta, hummus with corn chips, the kids had hot dogs and the grownups had these lovely chicken sausages on these awesome bakery buns,  chocolate peanut butter muffins, fresh fruit, and one of the vendors was making stone-fired pizzas … and of course we made s’mores. We had fruit and tea, milk stout (my new favorite kind of beer!), water, juice, tea, Pinot Grigio … but no, there weren’t any fancy plates. No napkins even.

I saw wildflowers, amazing big oak trees, beautiful puffy white clouds, more stars than you can imagine.

Wildflower at the folk festival

There was a stick bug about 5 inches long … I’d never seen anything like it before! It was crazy, like something you would see only at a zoo.

Stick bug at the folk festival

And the forests called to us …

Forest path

Ah it was lovely! But back to reality.

We managed somehow to get home today around 4 pm. Even though I stayed up most the night, I woke at my normal time this morning, and there was much to do around the house when we got home. I did laundry, dishes, mowed the lawn, went grocery shopping … and all of this while I am dead tired from lack of sleep …

And now I’m hungry. But I have no energy to cook. Yet I want something civilized after the wilderness-eating.

Good thing I thought to pick up some salad greens and pita bread while we were at the grocery store. And I have the first fresh tomato of the season! And some hummus left as well. I was in dire need of something saladicious.

Pita with hummus, mixed greens, goat cheese, feta, tomato & toasted pinons

Pita with hummus, mixed greens, goat cheese, feta, tomato & toasted pinons

So here’s what you do to make one of these beauties:

  1. Take a whole wheat pita pocket and slice it in half.
  2. Spread the inside with hummus. (I used my basil-iferous hummus.)
  3. Add:
    • chopped vidalia onions
    • mixed greens
    • chopped fresh tomato
    • tomato-basil feta
    • toasted pinons (pine nuts)
    • crumbled goat cheese.
  4. Toss in some fresh basil leaves for good measure.
  5. Have a glass of good white wine on the side.
Pita with hummus, mixed greens, goat cheese, feta, tomato & toasted pinons

Ah! It’s good to be home! :)

Nutrition Information:

Assuming you use 1 T. of each type of cheese crumbles, 4 T. of hummus and 1 T. of pine nuts. You can put as many veggies as you want without really affecting the calories. Amazing, over 9 g of fiber plus over 14 grams of protein with only 349 calories!
Nutrition Information for Pita with hummus, mixed greens, goat cheese, feta, tomato & toasted pinons

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