Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Ode to Basil

Lunch - Creamy pesto pasta

Come summer, pesto is one of my favorite things to make. Fresh basil, garlic, olive oil, pine nuts (or walnuts), Parmesan cheese, salt, and pepper. So simple, yet flavorful and delicious. In the U.S., we would grow a lot of basil and always have fresh pesto at hand during the summer months. In India, the common variety is Holy Basil (Tulsi) which is distinct from Italian basil. It is worshipped in India (thus Holy), and is also known for its ayurvedic properties. While it is delicious in tea, it doesn't really work for pesto. So I was especially chuffed to see some Italian basil at the grocery store. I made up my standard pesto and added it to a simple bechamel sauce. I served the pasta tossed with the creamy pesto sauce with some roasted veggies on the side. The simple salad was dressed with a honey-yogurt-dill dressing. It made for a satisfying lunch.

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