Fettuccine with pesto, potato & green beans

pesto

The start of summer means the start of homemade basil pesto. Homemade pesto is a million times better than anything you will buy in the stores and is not very hard. I always make pesto with a mortar and pestle. It allows me to control the consistency and I like being able to see it all come together right in front of your eyes rather than whizzing everything in a blender. This recipe, like many others, is straight Italian Food Safari (Lucio Galletto) and adding potatoes and green beans is a nice variation to traditional basil pesto dishes.

Garlic Prawn Pasta

garlicprawnpasta
This pasta dish is a Donna Hay recipe and is super quick and simple. The best part is you cook with spaghetti and the prawns cook whilst the spaghetti cooks so it’s basically ready in about 10 minutes. The worst part is peeling the prawns but hopefully you have somebody to delegate that too. I’ve made this a couple of times and it can be dry if you cook too much spaghetti so have extra olive oil or lemon juice at the ready.

Stuffed baby eggplants

These bite-sized baby eggplants are a great idea for starters when entertaining friends. The stuffing is garlic, breadcrumbs, parsley, parmesan cheese and an egg plus the insides of the eggplants that have been lightly fried in olive oil. Top with extra parmesan and bake for 20 minutes or until golden.

IMG_3602

Squid ink risotto

In 2007 I was in Genoa and tasted squid ink spaghetti for the first time on a strong recommendation from my local hosts. Ever since I have always been curious about it, ordering it at every possibility. People think the ink will make the risotto super-fishy but that is not the case. Visually, this is special as no other dish is completely black and there is something mysterious about eating risotto with ink.
IMG_2818

Like all Italian dishes, minimal ingredients, an onion, garlic, chilli (optional) and squid. We substituted fish stock for chicken stock and cooked the squid separately with a splash of lemon, adding it to the risotto with about 5 minutes before it was ready. Serve immediately and garnish with fresh parsley.