RSS Feed

Tag Archives: blender

Pesto to the Rescue

Every summer, we grow our own vegetable garden, and along side the garden we grow herbs in pots.  And every year we have grand ideas of how we are going to use these herbs in all of the dishes that we make.

And every year we end up with several pots of herbs that we barely touch.

This summer we are on a mission to change that!

DSCN6176

What requires a whole bunch of herbs, but is still easy to make and doesn’t require cooking (It’s hot. Who wants to turn on an oven, or even a stove-top!)?

DSCN6183

Pesto, that’s what!

And since we’re really indecisive and couldn’t decide which herb we wanted to include, we threw a few different ones in and hoped for the best.

DSCN6181

Lemon Basil, African Blue Basil, Sage and Arugula.  You want flavour?  You got it!  Paired with some toasted walnuts, garlic and a little lemon juice to finish it off- you will want to spread this stuff on everything.  But be sure to make a double-batch, because we’ve got a delicious summer meal coming your way that features this magnificent spread, and you’re going to want to use every last drop! 😉

Don’t have lemon basil or African Blue basil?  No problem!  Regular basil works just fine.  Don’t have an herb garden?  We’re betting you have a neighbour or two who would be happy to share their bounty with you 🙂

So go ahead and use 10 minutes to make this- then go and enjoy that summer sun!

Basil-Sage-Arugula-Walnut Pesto

DSCN6176

Time: 10 minutes
Makes: ~1/2 c.

Ingredients:

1/2 c walnuts, toasted
1/3 c. basil leaves
1/4 c. sage leaves
1/3 c. arugula
1/4 tsp salt
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tbsp lemon juice
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp water

Directions:

Put the walnuts, basil, sage, arugula, salt, garlic and lemon juice into a blender or food processor.  Blend on high until the mixture becomes mealy and starts to form a paste.  With the motor running, slowly add the olive oil.  If your pesto is still too thick after adding all of the olive oil, add the tablespoon of water.  Blend until the mixture is somewhat smooth. (it will still have some texture).  Store in a sealed container in the fridge for 2-3 days.

~twosaucysisters

Do you have an herb garden?  How do you use up all of your herbs?

Simple Sunday: Smoothie

Today is Simple Smoothie Sunday! (Say that ten times fast!)

DSCN5403

We have had more than one request for a smoothie recipe, and today we are finally honoring our multiple promises to put one on the blog- and with the weather finally starting to warm up, now is the perfect time for it! 🙂

DSCN5405

Because while cold weather makes you want to tuck into a nice, warm bowl of oatmeal, warmer temperatures call for a nice cold, thick and creamy smoothie!

DSCN5397

So let’s go over why smoothies are so awesome:

1. They’re so customize-able!  You can use any variety of fruit or yogurt, milk or juice, you can even throw some veggies in there!  The sky is the limit!
2. They’re delicious.  Honestly, if Orange Julius can base their entire (successful!) business of of them, they must be good, right?  Because who doesn’t love a thick, creamy drink that’s actually good for them?  Which leads us to our third point…
3. They’re healthy! (Well, most of the time…) And they make great post-workout snacks, and of course, amazing breakfasts, too!
4. If you do it right, they taste almost as good as milk shakes 😉
5. Oh, and we already mentioned it, but they’re so easy!

DSCN5414

So in celebration of the the much-anticipated and long-awaited arrival of spring, dust off that blender and pour yourself a nutrient-packed smoothie!

Basic Smoothie

DSCN5403

Prep Time: 5 min
Serves: 2 medium smoothies (or one very large one!)

Ingredients:

1 banana
1 c. frozen fruit (any kind!)
2/3 c. yogurt (plain, vanilla, fruit-flavoured, etc.)
1 c. milk (or juice, or half-juice half-milk)

Directions:

Throw everything into the blender and blend until it’s nice and smooth!

Optional Add-ins:

-spinach (yes, you can add up to a cup of spinach to this recipe without even tasting it!  Try it, you’ll suprise yourself!)
– protein powder (this makes for a great post-workout shake.  You may have to add a little extra liquid, depending on the protein powder you use)
– spices (try cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, etc.)
– avocado (half an avocado makes this smoothie super creamy, and adds some healthy fats)
-Oats (for some whole grains to make this a meal- you’ll just have to add some extra liquid!)
– Fresh Fruit if you don’t have frozen- you just might want to add some ice so your smoothie will still be cold

~twosaucysisters

What is your favourite, go-to smoothie recipe?

Bloggers and Bibles

One of our all-time favourite recipes we’ve ever made from another blogger is this:

parsnip puree

Roasted Parsnip and Caramelized Onion Puree.

This genius creation comes from Gina over at Running to the Kitchen.  If you have never been to her site before, you should make a point of paying her a visit ASAP.  Seriously, this women comes up with the most amazing meals and snacks, and she’s hilarious, too.  Even if you don’t like cooking, you’ll love her blog just for general reading!  She has a way of taking everyday situations and turning them into scenarios the likes of which you would find in a sitcom.

But we’ve gone a bit off track now, haven’t we?  We were talking about this parsnip puree!  It may look humble, but don’t let it’s outer appearance fool you- it is what food dreams are made of! (Hey now, hey now… ;))

Of course, after we made her recipe (with a few modifications- we don’t often have heavy cream lying around- cottage cheese and Greek yogurt to the rescue!) we decided it was about time we created our own version, but we decided to use the parsnip’s more well-known cousin… carrots!

DSCN4814

Not that we don’t absolutely LOVE parsnips (they just so happen to be one of our all-time favourite vegetables- partially thanks to Gina!!) but we just thought that the bright orange hue from the carrots might be kind of fun 🙂

DSCN4829

So we knew we wanted to use carrots, but as for what else we wanted to add to it?  That was a little tougher to decide.  So we’re going to let you in on a little secret here.  What do we do when we are stumped for flavour combination ideas?  We consult the Flavour Bible.

flavour Bible

This book is every cooks best friend! When your creativity well is running dry, this book will give you a million-and-one ideas for flavour pairings for every food you can possibly think of!

DSCN4818

After reading through the seemingly endless list of flavours and foods that go with carrots (who knew there were so many!?!) we finally decided on ginger.  It made sense, since we just so happened to have a knob of fresh ginger sitting in our fridge 🙂

DSCN4824

Then of course we hummed and hawed for a little while longer trying to decide what else we should put in this puree, because for some reason we always seem to think that just having one flavour add-in isn’t enough.  But we honestly couldn’t think of anything else to add, so we just left it as it was.  And you know what? It turned out to be just right.  Sometimes, simplicity is best!

DSCN4828

So now you’re probably thinking “well this is great- you’ve given me a bowl of orange mush- now what?”.  The simple answer to that is eat it!  If you’re starting to get tired of mashed potatoes, this is a great substitution.  Pair it with some grilled chicken (or tofu!) and a salad, maybe a warm piece of crusty bread and you’ve got yourself the makings of a fantastic meal 🙂

Carrot and Ginger Puree

DSCN4824

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Makes: 1.5-2 cups

Ingredients:

2 large carrots
1 c. chickpeas
1/2 tbsp fresh ginger
1 clove garlic
2 tbsp plain Greek yogurt
2 tbsp Cottage Cheese
2 tbsp-1/4 c. milk of choice (unsweetened)
1/4 tsp salt
black pepper, to taste

Directions:

Peel the carrots and cut into chunks.  Place them in a microwave-safe bowl with about 2 tbsp of water.  Cover with plastic wrap and microwave for 3-5 minutes, or until carrots are very soft.  (you could also steam the carrots on the stove top, we just went with the microwave because it’s quicker!) Add carrots (including the water), chickpeas, ginger, garlic, yogurt and cottage cheese to a food processor or high-powered blender and blend until smooth.  While the motor is running, add the milk, 1 tbsp at a time, until it reaches the texture/thickness you desire.  Add the salt and pepper, and continue blending until everything is fully incorporated, adjusting the seasonings to your taste.

~twosaucysisters

What do you do when you are stuck for flavour ideas?

WIAW: The Comforts of Fall

Can you believe it’s already the end of September?

We’ve been back in school for almost a month now, and we both still feel like we’re trying to make the transition from summer, which is why the theme for this month’s What I Ate Wednesday- “Falling into Good Habits”–  just seems so appropriate!  Because “falling” is a great way to describe the completely un-graceful transition that we are attempting to make, here.

But there are a few things that have been helping make this transition easier, or at least more pleasant.  Of course, being back with our cross country team has been fabulous, and we do love being in London, but there is one aspect of fall that really speaks to our inner-foodies.

As you know (and we’re sure you’ve all noticed lately!) the temperature takes a bit of a nose-dive this time of year.  And while we are both summer girls at heart, we take comfort in the fact that along with cooler temperatures comes one of our favourite foods- soup!

And not just any soup.  We’re talking about the thick, creamy variety made from nothing else but the season’s best squash (that just so happen to be only 50 cents/lb!).

Creamy Coconut, Buttercup squash and lentil soup.  Comfort in a bowl, friends!

We seriously can’t think of anything better than coming home from a hard cross country workout in the brisk fall breeze and digging into a warm bowl of this soup.

So if you’re feeling like us, and are still trying to adapt to the season, give this soup a try.  It might not help you keep track of all your homework and assignments, or just simply fall back into your routine, but it’ll make the transition easier 🙂

And then head over and visit Jenn at Peas and Crayons, and check out all the other What I Ate Wednesday participants!

Creamy Coconut Buttercup Squash and Lentil Soup

Prep Time: 10 min
Cook Time: 35
Serves: 2-3

Ingredients:

2 small buttercup squash, roasted and peeled
1/4 white onion, diced
1 clove garlic
1/2 red bell pepper, diced
1/2c. red lentils
4 c. water
1/2 c. coconut milk
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:

Place buttercup squash, onion, garlic, bell pepper, lentils, and water in a large pot over medium-high heat.  Bring to a boil, then reduce to medium-low and simmer for 25 minutes.

Transfer to a blender or food processor and blend until smooth.  Return to the pot and add coconut milk and seasonings.  Return the soup to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes, or until heated through.  Add 1/4-1/2c. extra water if you desire a thinner consistency.

Spoon into bowls and serve topped with yogurt and hot sauce, if desired.

~twosaucysisters

What are your favourite Fall comfort foods?