Tag Archives: olive oil

Recipe: Vegan Pesto

Vegan Pesto | Tiffany Lane HandmadeI absolutely love pesto! It’s definitely in my top 5 for sauces and condiments, right up there with mustard. Yes…mustard. But that’s a topic for another day.

Back to the pesto. It goes with almost anything. Burgers, pizza, pasta. Yes, I do eat these on occasion. And I consider them more gourmet with pesto, which by default makes them healthier. Right?

But really, I put this stuff on almost everything. Eggs. Avocados. Toast with eggs and avocados. As a veggie dip. In wraps and sandwiches. On tacos. With roasted eggplant. Or any roasted vegetable really. And even with just a spoon sometimes.

So this pesto I’m talking about. It’s awesome.  And hubby approved. Which means it’s actually awesome, not just Tiffany awesome. He even said about the last batch I made that it must have crack in it because he couldn’t get enough.

Funny thing about this recipe, though. It’s more of a ratio built around your preference.  I normally eye ball everything then blend it all up in the food processor.  Easy as pie. Or should that be pesto?

Oh, and it’s vegan. Simply because I don’t feel the need to add tons of cheese to everything I eat (not because I’m vegan…because I’m not). But don’t be deterred, you dairy eating folk.  What it lacks in cheese, it completely makes up for in pure deliciousness. Remember, it’s (carnivorous/dairy loving) hubby approved.

If you’re anything like me, and I hope you are, you’ve probably got most, if not all, of these ingredients in your kitchen already. Greens, check. Nuts, check. Olive oil, check. Fresh garlic and lemon, check. Salt and pepper, check.

Traditional pesto is made with basil and pine nuts, but in true Tiffany fashion, I’ve got to mix it up and make everything my own. So, I use whatever greens I’ve got on hand (normally kale or arugula, sometimes basil), and whatever nuts I’m feeling that day (usually cashews, since they’re creamy like pine nuts, but not as ridiculously expensive, and many times I also use almonds or walnuts). And more than just using fresh lemon juice, I also add in the zest, because why not?

Like I said, just throw it all in the food processor, let it whirl, give it a taste, add a little more of this or that to round it out, and you’re good to go.

Vegan Pesto | Tiffany Lane Handmade

But this wouldn’t be a true recipe if I didn’t list it out all pretty with some sort of directions, would it?

VEGAN PESTO

Ingredients
greens (basil, kale, arugula, or anything else you like)
nuts (pine nuts, cashews, pecans, walnuts, almonds, or anything else you like)
olive oil
fresh lemon, juice and zest
fresh garlic cloves
salt

pepper

Preparation

Throw it all in the food processor (maybe start with half and half, greens to nuts, 1 garlic clove, half the lemon juice and zest, a dash of salt and pepper, then add in the olive oil until you get a nice consistency), let it whirl, give it a taste, add a little more of this or that to round it out, and you’re good to go.

What are you gonna put your pesto on?

Vegan Pesto | Tiffany Lane Handmade

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Recipe: Roasted Eggplant with Pesto, Parsley and Lemon

Roasted Eggplant with Pesto, Parsley and Lemon | Tiffany Lane Handmade

Roasted Eggplant with Pesto, Parsley and Lemon | Tiffany Lane HandmadeWhen the hubs is out I tend to make yummy veggie dishes for dinner. Since he’s a carnivore and all, he wouldn’t appreciate this as much as I do. But don’t get me wrong, anyone who likes eggplant will love this!

One of my favorite things about this recipe is the fact that I threw it together with my on-their-last-leg eggplants, homemade pesto from the weekend and leftover parsley from the pesto. Those tend to be my favorites.  The ones just thrown together out of necessity rather than the long thought out/thoroughly planned dinners. Something about the spontaneous creativity makes them taste better.

The other thing I LOVE about it?  It’s so quick and easy!  Just a few ingredients and a few minutes for cooking.

While I ate mine warm, hot off the stove, I would venture to guess this would be just as delicious cooled. I’m thinking on a hot summer afternoon served with lemon/cucumber water and watermelon/basil skewers.  Yum!

If you’ll notice, I don’t have much for measurements (besides for the pesto recipe that follows) because there really are no measurements.  It’s all to taste, so just go for it.

ROASTED EGGPLANT WITH PESTO, PARSLEY AND LEMON

Time: 15-20 minutes

Ingredients
eggplant
olive oil
salt/pepper
parsley almond pesto (recipe below or use any other type)
fresh parsley, chopped

lemon juice

Parsley Almond Pesto Ingredients (adapted from Gourmette NYC)
1 cup almonds
4 clove garlic
6 cups parsley
1 1/4 cups olive oil
1 medium lemon, zested and juiced

salt and pepper, to taste

Preparation

Slice your eggplant into rounds then roast or grill to desired done-ness.  I like mine al dente, if you will.  Barely cooked through in the center, soft with crunchy edges on the top and bottom from roasting.

Top with pesto, parsley and fresh lemon juice.

Parsley Almond Pesto Preparation

In a food processor, pulse the almonds, garlic and parsley until chopped.  With the machine running, slowly add in olive oil in a steady stream until incorporated and to desired consistency. Then add lemon juice and zest, followed by salt and pepper to taste.

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DIY: Beer Bottles Turned Olive Oil + Dressing Dispensers

We use olive oil like crazy in our house.  Seriously. We usually roast veggies 2-4 nights per week, use olive oil to baste meats, and whenever we cook something in a pan (except for when hubby decides to use butter instead!).  For that reason, I like to buy it in bulk, but the container it comes in is a little too large to handle easily.  I had been wanting one of those fancy schmancy “olive oil dispensers” I’d seen at Bed, Bath and Beyond with the easy pour spout, but couldn’t bring myself to actually pay for one.  Then I found a set of easy pour spouts and knew I had some salvaged bottles at home in my stash that would work wonderfully.

I love to keep and reuse glass bottles, especially interesting ones.  The one I used for our olive dispenser is a beer bottle and it’s the darker bottle in the background of the first photo.  I love the cool hardware on it!

Since I had an extra spout lying around, I also made something similar for my homemade balsamic dressing.  I love a simple salad dressing.  For me, it’s balsamic vinaigrette all the way.  And since I usually don’t approve of the price or ingredients in store bought dressings, I just make my own.  But I didn’t have any good salad dressing bottles lying around.  Solution: reuse another beer bottle.

For the label, I took a piece of scrap kraft paper, stamped the words and simply taped it together on the back.  When I need to clean the bottle, the label slides right off and on again.

For the dressing, I simply combine equal parts olive oil and balsamic vinegar.  I know most recipes have some more ingredients and spices, but I like it this way because it’s simple to throw together when I run out (which is often!) and there’s no need for refrigeration.

Besides the fact that I love this project because it’s both a DIY and eco- friendly, I love that the end result is also a little rustic.

What have you reused beer bottles for?  Email me photos of your DIY projects for beer bottles or anything else, and your DIY might make it onto the Facebook Page or even into a blog post!

If you have any ideas you’d like me to do a DIY post about, leave a comment below.  I have lots of bottles I can reuse and always more to come since hubby loves his beer!

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Balsamic Caramelized Onion, Goat Cheese & Pear Pizza

I love pizza when it means yummy (gourmet) ingredients!  Pizza doesn’t just have to be pepperoni and cheese, right? So for this mouth watering recipe, grab your pizza stones and get to cookin’!

The combination of pear, onion and goat cheese is most definitely not a new development, especially for pizza. But why tamper with a classic? And the balsamic vinegar adds just enough subtle pop to the onions for a full body gourmet pizza. This is by far one of my favorites and I hope you enjoy making it for your family this summer.

Ingredients
2 sweet yellow onions, thinly sliced
1 pear,thinly sliced
1 package/serving whole wheat pizza dough
crumbled goat cheese
2-3 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for dough
1-2 splashes balsamic vinegar
salt to taste

 

Preparation
Heat olive oil in large skillet.  Saute onions, adding salt to taste until they caramelize. After about 15-20 minutes, just before onions are tender and browning, add a couple splashes of balsamic vinegar and continue to cook onions until fully caramelized.  The whole process should take about 25-30 minutes. 
 
Meanwhile, preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit and allow pizza dough to return to room temperature. Then stretch or roll out dough and place on pizza stone or lightly oiled baking pan.  Lightly coat dough with olive oil.  Once the onions are ready, spread evenly over dough, then layer the sliced pear and goat cheese crumbles, to taste.
 
Bake for 8-12 minutes, until edges just begin to toast. Let cool slightly, serve and enjoy!
 

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