Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Pasta with Sun-dried Tomato Pesto

Am I a terrific wife or what?  After a grueling 12-hour work day, I arrive home at 9:15, feed the baby and put her to bed, and... sit down and relax get in the kitchen and start cooking!!  I know what you're thinking -- "Last minute Christmas preparations, big deal, we're all doing that this week!".  But that's not the case, my friends!  I came home after a long day and prepared a dish for my husband to take to work with him tomorrow for a pot-luck luncheon.  Now if that's not love, I don't know what is.
I'm not gonna lie -- this is a really simple recipe, one that every cook should keep in their back pocket for times when they want no-fuss but really want to impress.  I followed this recipe by Giada DeLaurentiis, and it couldn't have been any easier.  I have actually made this dish several times in the past (definitely a go-to in our house), and it is a hit every time.  I think the best part about it is that it can made ahead of time and either served cold or brought to room temperature -- delicious either way. 
The sweet sun-dried tomatoes are a nice contrast to the sharp flavor of raw garlic (oh yeah, did i mention that you don't even need to cook the keeps getting better!!) and aromatic, almost spicy, fresh herbs.  I ended up using fresh parsley instead of basil because that is what I had on hand tonight, but it is really delicious either way.  Next time you need a quick meal that you can throw together with ingredients you most likely already have on hand, consider this great pasta dish.  Enjoy the deliciousness!

Pasta with Sun-dried Tomato Pesto
8.5 ounce jar sun-dried tomatoes with Italian herbs, packed in olive oil
1 cup fresh parsley leaves and stems
3 garlic cloves
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
1 box pasta, cooked according to directions on the box

In the bowl of a food processor, combine sun-dried tomatoes and their oil with the parsley and garlic until tomatoes are finely chopped.  Transfer to a bowl, and stir in cheese, salt, and pepper.  The mixture will be kind of thick, so when you boil up the pasta, make sure to save some of the cooking liquid to help thin out your sauce if needed.  Serve hot, cold, or at room temperature.
Adapted from Giada DeLaurentiis

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