Summer may be over in most of the country, but here in Florida it's just like the first harvests of July up North.. and that means lots of beautiful basil and summer squash. Whenever I see a bounty of basil at the farmer's market, the first thing I think of is pesto.
Grab a couple of bunches of basil (or more) and blend up a batch of pesto that you can freeze and use throughout the season (Tip: freeze in an ice cube tray for easy portioning).
Pesto is a wonderful addition to many dishes including roasted vegetables, scrambled tofu (or eggs), pizza and sandwiches. For this week's Taste Cart at the Saturday Morning Market, I'm making gluten-free Pesto Pasta with Sauteed Summer Squash.
I used a combination of Tuscan and Italian basil, with walnuts, for my pesto this week. The Italian basil is what most people are familiar with, but the curly Tuscan basil is just as good. Feel free to experiment with these types, and your choice of nuts. Traditionally pesto is made with pine nuts, but walnuts work just as well.
Pesto Pasta with Sauteed Summer Squash
2 bunches of basil, Italian or Tuscan (or one of each), washed, thick stems removed
2 cups of walnuts
2-3 cloves garlic, peeled
1 t salt
1/2 t pepper
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
In a food processor, grind the walnuts, garlic and salt. Then add basil, olive oil, pepper and blend again. Taste and add more salt, pepper or olive oil as needed. Portion in containers or ice cube tray, cover and freeze. Keep some fresh if using right away.
4 pattypan, yellow squash or zucchini, sliced thin
1/2 pint cherry tomatoes
1/2 bunch kale, collard greens, tatsoi or other leafy green, washed and chopped (hard stem removed)
3-4 cloves of garlic, minced
juice from 1 lemon
1/4 cup white wine or mirin
salt and pepper
1 package gluten-free brown rice & quinoa pasta (fusilli), or pasta of your choice, cooked
Directions: Toss cooked pasta with 1/2 cup pesto, season with more olive oil, salt and pepper to taste.
Heat 2 T olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat, add lemon juice and half the wine or mirin, garlic, some salt and pepper. Allow this to bubble up, and cook garlic 2 minutes. Add the squash, cook 3-4 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the cherry tomatoes and kale, season with more salt and pepper, and add the rest of the wine. Cook for another 4-5 minutes until squash is tender. Pour mixture over pesto pasta, toss and serve.