Sunday, April 3, 2011

Penne with Arugula-Walnut Pesto

We had a delicious meal last night for dinner!  First, I made the pesto and let it rest in the refrigerator while I made biscuits and then boiled the pasta while those were baking.  I've tried "homemade" biscuits, but we LOVE the Betty Crocker Gluten-Free Bisquick recipe!!  It is super simple, and the results are amazing.  I got two thumbs up from my adorable husband. That is always a good thing!

12 oz. arugula with stems removed
2 garlic cloves, cracked and peeled
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup walnut pieces, toasted
1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1 lb. gluten-free Penne pasta
  1. In a small saucepan, over medium heat, cook garlic cloves in olive oil for five minutes.  Remove from stove and set aside to cool slightly.
  2. Fill food processor with arugula (loosely packed).  Add walnuts, garlic, nutmeg, salt and pepper, and one-half of the warm oil.  Once lid is in place, pulse until you grind enough to get a smooth paste.  Stir in the remaining oil and Parmesan cheese.  Spoon the pesto into the bottom of a pasta serving bowl.
  3. Cook pasta according to product instructions.  Drain.  Pour cooked pasta over the pesto.  Add 1/2 ladle of pasta water, and stir pasta together with pesto.  Serve warm.
Note:  Sometimes I add 1/2 cup of sauteed mushrooms to the pasta before tossing with pesto.

Betty Crocker GF Bisquick Garlic Biscuits

2 cups gluten-free Bisquick
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
2/3 cup cold milk
1/4 cup cold butter
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
3 eggs

Garlic Butter Topping
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  Mix Bisquik and 1/4 tsp. garlic powder, whisking together to blend.  Add  butter; use a pastry blender or strong fork to blend until mixed to crumb-stage.  Add milk and eggs; mix.  Add cheese; mix.  
  2. Drop by large spoonfuls onto an ungreased baking sheet.  (The original BC recipe says you'll get 10 biscuits, but I can easily get 12 biscuits from this recipe.)
  3. Bake for 10-12 minutes until golden brown.  While the biscuits are baking, melt the topping butter and mix with 1/4 tsp. garlic powder.  Brush the topping over the biscuits as soon as you take them from the oven.  Serve warm. 

Favorite Smoothie Recipes

Strawberry Banana #1
1 cup milk
1 cup water
10-oz. frozen strawberries, partially thawed
1 medium firm banana, cut into chunks
1 tsp. gluten-free vanilla extract
6 ice cubes

Strawberry Banana #2
2 medium ripe bananas
1 can crushed pineapple, drained
1 1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup fresh or frozen strawberries
2 tablespoons gluten-free organic honey
5 ice cubes

Peach Strawberry
1 cup fresh strawberries
1 cup fresh or frozen unsweetened sliced peaches
1 cup gluten-free plain or vanilla yogurt
1-2 tablespoons sugar
Dash of cinnamon (sprinkle on top before serving)

Peach Smoothie
2 cups milk
2 cups frozen unsweetened peaches
1/4 cup orange juice
2 tablespoons sugar
5 ice cubes

Combine all ingredients in a blender, and process until smooth.