Posts Tagged ‘pesto’

In three years, I have moved three times.  You could say that I am restless, or you could say Toronto has a number of “dwellings” that look good from the outside, but leak out their bad qualities immediately upon signing a year’s lease.  So with a third move in sight, I decided it was time to make a list: a list of must-haves and a list of must-not-haves.  After already being exposed to most of the must-not-haves in Toronto, it’s safe to say that that list was far longer. 

However, there were some key priorities for me upon moving into a new home, one being a backyard or balcony.  Sure you can laugh, but believe me when I say these amenities are hard to come by in the big city.  So when I was led into a backyard on my hundreth viewing, I was sold.  Not only was there grass, but there was a garden: an unruly tomato bush, a surviving pepper plant, a just started zucchini patch, a few sprigs of basil and chives, and a never ending spread of mint.

Oh, the mint.  I think it is the one plant out that could outlast a cold snap.  It seems to just keep growing.  With little to no basil left on its stems, I was forced to turn to the influx of mint in preparation for dinner last night. 

After not a lot of pasta cooking during the summer, I decided that the end of September called for a hearty pasta dish.  Mint and pasta, you say? How about mint pesto pasta?

Mint Pesto

* Makes about 1 cup


3/4 cup of mint leaves

1/2 cup of parsley

2 cloves of garlic, diced

2 tbsp. of lemon juice, or half a lemon’s juice

1/4 cup toasted pecans

2 tbsp. olive oil, more if needed

1/2 cup ricotta cheese

1/4 cup pasta water, more or less depending

chilis, to taste

salt and pepper, to taste


1. In a small frying pan, toast pecans on medium heat until lightly browned and aromatic.

2. Thoroughly wash mint and parsley, and add to food processor.  Puree until roughly chopped.

3. Add garlic and lemon juice to mix.  Continue to process.  Add toasted pecans.  Process.  Slowly add olive oil until smooth consistancy forms (does not have to be completely smooth!)

4. Transfer to another bowl.  Add the ricotta cheese and mix thoroughly.  Add salt and pepper, and chilis.  Slowly add water until the sauce reaches the consistancy you desire.  Taste. Mmm.

5.  Add cooked pasta (I used brown rice fusilli pasta,) and stir until every noodle is coated.

Enjoy! I decided to add chopped cherry tomatoes at the last minute for some colour.  I served this alongside a simple salad.  It was so creamy and fresh tasting thanks to the mint.  I will definately make this again soon with a few changes in hopes to produce a vegan version.

What is a priority for you when it comes to house-hunting?


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