real food. real life.
Today's recipe post is brought to you by.... the lack of tomato sauce in our freezer and the half-cooked supper that I had already started!
Haha, sorry, not very inspirational, I know, but it's the truth, folks!
And, like usual, the tastiest dishes, at least for me, just like my teaching, are the ones I didn't plan! It turned out tasting yummy! With no plan in place, it turned out great. I say just like my teaching because, as my good friend and talented teacher mama Meghan knows, the best lessons in the classroom are the ones you don't plan for. Those amazing teachable moments where something completely random takes you way from the planned activity and leaves you in a wonderfully deep and meaningful discussion or activity that, at least you think, makes a lasting impression on the kiddos.
I can also give credit to my awesome farm share from TapRoot Farms for providing us those frozen basil pucks! They are so useful!! Just a mix of basil and oil, frozen into a puck-sized portion. Added to any recipe, gives the taste of fresh basil without really having fresh basil... because, well, let's face it, the weather here is nowhere near providing us with fresh basil...
Here's the recipe from last night's impromptu awesomeness! Pretty easy, and the add-ins are optional, honestly, because I was really just planning to make a basic tomato & pasta meal... change of plans! :)
Total Time: 20 minutes
Pasta of choice (Lee's favourite is penne, it worked well)
1-2 lemons - depending on size, and honestly, the more the better!
1 basil/oil frozen puck! Or, about 1/2 cup finely chopped basil & olive oil as needed
1-2 garlic cloves, minced, or about 1-2 tsp garlic powder
sea salt/pepper to taste
1 small onion, finely chopped
Optional add-ins (as seen in pic)
Chicken, Pork, Steak, or Sausage (We had italien sausage)
Snow peas would be good, I think!
What to do:
1) Boil water for pasta.
2) While water is heating up, heat a drizzle or two of oil in the pan over medium heat (deep dish pan works great for pasta dishes!). If adding meat, cook this first in the pan until no longer pink. If not, start with the next step.
3) Add onion and garlic to the pan, and maybe a bit more oil if needed to avoid sticking too much. Stir around the pan for about 3-4 minutes until it's smelling amazing! Using the outside skin of a lemon and a zester, sprinkle about a tsp worth of lemon zest into the mixture. Stir around. Then add the basil puck or basil/extra oil and stir around until you've created this green oily mess! Haha, seriously.
3) Add other veggies now, if using. Stir around until greens wilt, tomatoes become soft, etc. Turn heat to low.
4) While this is happening, you should be cooking the pasta. If the pasta is still cooking, maybe remove the other pan from the heat to not overcook. Once pasta is done and drained, add to the pan with the onions, garlic, basil, etc. Stir around, turn heat to medium-low.
5) Cut lemons in half and squeeze, squeeze, squeeze overtop the pasta dish! Stir, squeeze, stir, squeeze, until you just can't squeeze anymore! Test a noodle and decide if you'd like to add sea salt/pepper for more flavour. I added a few shakes of each. Should taste lemony but sweet with the basil. Oh, so yummy, and kind of springy! Enjoy!
We really cooked these things. From scratch. On weeknights. And we even had time to do the dishes.
They have real, simple ingredients that you'll find in your cupboards. They're healthy and delicious. No lies.
Thanks for reading. Leave a comment below!
Here's a pic of me and my babies. Just because.
A Bit About Me...