Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Don't ya just hate it when -


You anticipate that you can cook something out of some foodstuff or other, before it becomes fodder for the compost pile ... and you're wrong? I bought 3 bunches of basil, usually enough to make a good sized double batch of pesto, at the farmers' market Saturday (for the whopping sum of $3).

I thought I'd make pesto for dinner when we got back from moving John Sunday night, but in the end (as is often the way), we went for faster, easier to prepare stuff. John had a bacon-tomato-provolone paninni (I had cooked us a panful of bacon on Saturday a.m., that we ate with Stella's hot, spicey cheesebread, before we left for Milwaukee, and there was a plateful of cooked strips in the fridge) and Mark and I ate fried potatoes with jalpe├▒os and onions with the last of a hunk of cheddar grated on top, and the last 3 strips of bacon crumbled over that. I was remembering the description of fried potatoes with cheese on top that the young Indian character cooked for his estranged dad, in this book I just read, Yellowcake, about uranium mining in New Mexico - yellowcake is one of the stages the ore goes through. Anyways, fried potatoes seemed like good "keeping the wolf at bay" type of food, a la M.F.K. Fisher - the kind of thing you make by scrounging in the fridge and pantry, and cooking whatever is there.

So, by the time I actually got around to making the pesto, Monday night, (I went over to the dark side and bought pine nuts at Trader Joe's, thinking I'd need more than the few tablespoons I had on hand) the basil leaves had gotten brown and spotted and after cleaning, only yielded about a cup, basically a third of the recipe I usually use - so I didn't need those Trader Joe's pine nuts after all, and ended up with a scant 1/2 cup of finished pesto.

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