If Yan Could Cook. . .

Two Uses for Pesto: Roasted Vegetable Sandwiches & Pesto Linguine with Pancetta

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Pesto is an easy, simple, and clean way to remind your blender that you care. You know that it saves time on chopping and mincing. You know it truly integrates flavours for pastes and bases. And you know that it can take and grind a finger on a bad day. Oh yes, you know who’s boss, but how often do you truly express your subservience, or give sacrifice to its grudging benevolence?

I buy my blender flowers each week. Then we have tea.

First off, darken the desired amount of pine nuts and garlic gloves in a bit of oil.


Two or three bunches of basil, leaves only, go in with just enough oil to blend. Too much raw olive oil can overpower with its soapy, horticultural taste. Add the pine nuts and garlic, along with lots of shredded or grated parmesan or parm-reg, and use the blender on one of its coarser (lower) settings. Be extremely liberal with the cheese. When was the last time someone told you there was too much cheese in the sauce? Never? I thought so.

These pictures were taken during my pancetta phase, when I felt that salty cured pork held the universe together. Toss the sauce with hot cooked linguine and crushed pancetta bits.



The same pesto is the key to great roasted veggie sandwiches. Toss cubes of eggplant, red and yellow peppers, and zucchini in olive oil and salt (a touch of balsamic vinegar and oregano or rosemary works too, if that’s your thing), then lay them in one layer on a baking tray. If they overlap too much, they’ll steam and get soggy. Put them in the oven at 375 degrees F until they shrivel a bit. If you’re used to roasting root vegetables, keep in mind that these vegetables cook very quickly – it should take less than twenty minutes.


Use a fun kind of bread. Here we have an overly thick, onion-studded ciabatta. Spread one side with pesto.


Build your sandwich with roasted veggies and an ample heaping of feta or a creamy chevre. Goat cheese is, of course, tastier and more structurally sound. And sometimes all I need from a sandwich is that it doesn’t fall apart. Just like life.



Written by skimfu

August 11, 2009 at 10:09 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

One Response

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  1. OMG it looks superyummy. Your blog is tempting and mouth watering. Keep it up the good work.


    August 20, 2009 at 5:44 am

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