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A throwback to mom’s pesto

I’ll be honest, I’m not really a basil person. But my mom’s pesto is the only kind I like. Maybe it’s more of a sentimental thing. Maybe it just truly is the best. Many people have asked for her recipe over the years.  A huge part of my mom’s yearly summer garden was fresh herbs, basil aways being in huge abundance. Partly bc once it starts to grow, it grows like crazy! But I’ll never forget her weekend pesto making – getting her huge food processor out from  storage and making batches upon batches that she’d freeze or give out to family and friends. I’m so glad she passed this recipe down to me, especially as she can no longer make it herself. This year, I was able to grow a small pot of basil on my front porch to make her famous pesto. 

Not the crazy growth of basil she produced every year, but it will get there! It’s been a small feat for me to remember to water it every day, but I guess it being in my face when I get home from work every day has helped! Haha. Regardless, it grew enough to make the pesto. Here’s her treasured recipe. 


2 cups basil
2 cloves garlic
2 tbs pine nuts
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

In a food processor, pulse the basil with the garlic and pine nuts until finely minced. 

While the machine is still running, drizzle in the oil and process until smooth. Add the cheese and process briefly. I also add red pepper flakes. 

Enjoy with your favorite pasta or even over grilled chicken. My mom used to make a tortellini pesto salad for BBQs every summer. I haven’t thought about it in awhile, put it popped into my head recently. I recreated it for an extra pesto throwback. Enjoy! 


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Ramen Stir Fry

What’s better than to come home from work and get dinner on the table in less than 30 minutes? You can do this with a simple yet delicious ramen stir fry! I’ve told you I always have frozen shrimp in my freezer, so I used this as my protein since it’s easy to defrost and prepare. You can swap the shrimp out for any protein you’d like or just more veggies! Paired with my favorite color chopsticks 🙂 this meal is gorgeous and delicious. 

Ingredients (makes for 2)
Shrimp, 5 per person
1 red bell peppers, sliced
1/2 medium yellow onion, sliced
1-2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tbs coconut oil
1 tbs avocado oil
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 tsp agave nectar or honey
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/2 – 1 tbs sirracha sauce (depending on your spice level)
1/2 package of ramen noodle (can be found in the Asian aisle of your local supermarket)
1/4 cooking water reserved
Salt and pepper
1 scallion, sliced for garnish

In a large sauté pan, sauté the onions, peppers and garlic in both oils. Season with salt and pepper. Add the shrimp, season with more pepper and the chili powder and cook through.

Meanwhile, boil the water and cook the ramen according to the package. Reserve the 1/4 cup of cooking water before straining.

When the shrimp are just about done, add the agave nectar, soy sauce, sirracha, cooking water and the ramen. Stir to combine. Top with sliced scallions. Enjoy!