Pasta and Cookies

Two of my favorite foods!

Last night we had some friends over for dinner.  They are also a somewhat newly-married couple, and they are getting ready to teach English in China for a few years.  I’ve gotta say, I get a tad jealous whenever I hear about friends going to live abroad, and especially those going to Asia.  However, no awesome job opportunity, no matter how amazing the locale, could ever make me want to give my dogs away to someone else while I live in another country.  It’s sad but it’s true: I will probably never live abroad.  At least not for the time being.

I broke out our trusty Cuisinart to make some homemade pesto.  This is usually how I make it (this is enough to go with 2 lbs of dry pasta, i.e. it’s a LOT):

  • Big bunch of basil (remove the leaves from the stems)
  • Handful of spinach
  • About a cup of extra virgin olive oil (kinda gross, I know)
  • 1 cup pine nuts
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • dash of salt
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan

I blend the pine nuts, garlic, salt and olive oil together, then add the green stuff and cheese.  You can pretty much blend it to any consistency you like.  When the pasta is cooked, add the pesto and about a cup of sliced grape or cherry tomatoes.  Mix well.  Serve with grated Parmesan.

I turned to the master of delicious food for some side dish and dessert inspiration: Deb at Smitten Kitchen.  I found this awesome stuffed mushroom recipe, along with these ridiculously delicious oatmeal chocolate pecan chip cookies (with orange zest).

I also made my current favorite salad: spinach with sliced strawberries, goat cheese, and raspberry vinaigrette.

I tend to make too much of everything for dinner parties, and then have a ton of very rich leftovers that I feel obligated to eat (I’m cheap and wasting food pains me on a lot of levels).  This morning the 12 or so leftover cookies sat on a plate on the counter, beckoning me.  I can’t bring myself to throw them away, and I don’t have an office I can take them to get rid of them.

So yeah, I had oily, cheesy leftover pasta with cookies for my incredibly healthy lunch today.  It was delicious. Maybe this will have to be a double workout day.

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