The Basil Harvest

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Can I tell you how much I enjoy my herb and vegetable garden!  I have a raised bed on the side of my house, right outside the kitchen door.  When we moved into this house over 10 years ago, the bed was filled with unruly shrubbery and the soil quality was terrible.  Over the years, we have moved the shrubs out and my pretty little garden has taken over.

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My all-time favorite herb is basil.  I always plant 3-4 large plants and have more than we can possibly eat, even with cooking classes I teach!

If you are growing basil and have not harvested it, now is the time.  If the weather stays warm, it will continue to grow for a second harvest.

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 I make huge batches of pesto in my Cuisinart food processor and freeze it in individual portions to be enjoyed all through the winter months.

My pesto does not have much olive oil, so it is thick like paste.  This gives me the flexibility to use the pesto in a variety of recipes when it’s pulled from the freezer.

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My favorite way to eat pesto does not even require a recipe; just toast crusty bread and smear on plenty of pesto.

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Add lots of chewy sun dried tomatoes for a sweet tangy bite.

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Sprinkle on plenty of cheese and toast in the oven until cheese is bubbling.

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It’s that simple!

You will find my recipe for Basil pesto below; I hope to see you soon in an upcoming cooking class!

Follow me along with my sweet travelers starting next week as we taste our way through the best of Provence 2018! The very best place to find us in on Instagram @atasteofparis OR Facebook Atasteofparistrips and for information on the last 2 seats for 2019 CLICK HERE!  

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Basil Pesto

1½ cups fresh basil compacted

2 garlic cloves

½ cup walnuts

1/3 cup parmesan cheese grated

1 tablespoon olive oil

½ teaspoon salt

Place basil, garlic, walnuts, salt in food processor and pulse until smooth, add parmesan, olive oil and process until mixed well.

 

 

 

 

Blood Orange Martini

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I was in Trader Joe’s today and scored 2 bags of blood oranges for only $2.49 each!

In the past finding this unusual orange meant driving the distance to a specialty food store and paying what seemed like a king’s ransom for the honor.  You can understand my excitement about this deal at Traders.

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All I could think about was crafting my all-time favorite cocktail, Blood Orange Martinis this weekend!!

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The bright maroon colored flesh seems like a freak of nature.  The rich and vibrant hue makes me want to break into a happy dance.

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Generally we think about darker colored foods having greater nutritive value but the truth is there is not much difference between a navel orange and a blood orange.

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The flavor is a different story. Blood oranges are less acid than their counterparts and have a distinct smell and taste of red berries. This explains why the seasonal fruit is so special and perfection in my cocktail.

I hope you will grab a few bags of blood oranges, squeeze that precious juice and shake a few cocktail along with me.  We can toast each other!

à votre santé!

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blood orange martini

 Blood Orange Martini

1 part orange vodka

1 part blood orange soda

2 parts blood orange juice

½ part triple sec

Zest of ½ orange

Shake all ingredients with ice and strain before serving in a glass with a sugar rim.