Imagine Sunday night at our friends’ house, a little drizzly outside, so the kids are inside playing with LEGOs while the grown-ups relax over a glass of wine. We had just finished the quintessential BBQ dinner inside of grilled ribs, corn, fresh salad and watermelon for dessert. I could not believe my eyes when Rob handed me an abundance of fresh herbs from their garden.
Needless to say, I have been busy in my kitchen all week. First, I cut the lavender, arranged it in beautiful vases and put it in every bedroom in the house – love to go to sleep to the smell of fresh lavender! Then I cut up potatoes and drizzled with olive oil, garlic and the fresh rosemary. The chives were perfect for an omelette and the oregano for the grilled chicken. I used the fresh mint in sun tea, though this batch may be cloud tea as we are still waiting for the sun to come out. Mint will also be great in the mojitos I plan to serve on Friday night. Check out this great twist on a classic from Jessica at The Entertaining Kitchen.
To make this Sparkling Champagne Mojito you will need:
1/8 cup white rum
3-4 tbs of simple syrup
3 slices of lime
1 tsp crushed mint leaves
1/2 Cup Champagne or Proseco
In a small bowl crush mint and lime with the simple syrup
Pour into Champagne Flute
Add rum, ice if necessary and fill remainder of flute with champagne
Found this fuzzy wuzzy white caterpillar while prepping the basil. I took a break to run him upstairs to DD in the tubby – can’t miss those wild kingdom moments. She loved having him crawl all over her arm before I returned him to the rainy evening.
I have enough basil to add to my favorite tomato sauce, which I just make off the top of my head so no real recipe to add here and of course my mom’s pesto. My mother-in-law taught me to freeze trays of ice cubes with the pesto mixture. In the winter, I just grab a cube or two and toss it in the pasta. As DD would say deeeeelicious!
Speaking of our daughter, she helped me make Jessica’s Chimichurri Sauce listed below. She was very helpful measuring and pulsing the cuisinart. It’s great to cook with your kids – they will have a better appreciation of where food comes from and how much time it takes to prepare. Not to mention, when pouring the ingredients, you can be teaching them about fractions and measurements. Shhhh…don’t tell. There are lots of lessons to be learned in the kitchen. Then when it comes time to serve it, they are much more likely to eat it and proudly announce that they cooked it too!
1 cup of parsley (I used a combination of flat leaf as well as curly from our back yard)
1/4 cup of cilantro and some of the cumin seeds (optional – from our back yard)
2 cloves of garlic crushed
1/4 – 3/4 tsp of crushed red pepper
1/2 cup of good quality olive oil
1/4 cup of red wine vinegar
sea salt to taste
Remove leaves from stem and place in a mini food processor. Add the garlic, red pepper, olive oil, red wine vinegar and sea salt. Pulse until smooth. Remove and pour into a pretty pitcher or small serving bowl.
Drizzle over steak (fish, chicken, potatoes or rice) as desired.
Or drizzle over crusty baguette with leftover chicken or steak for a fabulous sandwich the next day!
For more great recipes like these, check out my dear friend Jessica, aka @GimletMommy, at The Entertaining Kitchen.
Hope you enjoyed this time in my kitchen. I love to hear from you. What’s cooking in your kitchen?