05 May 2014

Eats: parsley pesto potatoes

If I were a real food blogger – which I most certainly am not – I would’ve planned ahead and noticed that Cinco de Mayo falls on a Monday this year. And in that case, if I were a real food blogger (I’m not), I would’ve planned a Mexican-themed dish to share with you today! It would have been perfect, and I’d have patted myself on the back for being such a great food blogger. Which I’m not.

So instead I refer you to my past recipe for the best guacamole ever (which I’ve been making almost weekly for Taco Tuesdays) and a coupon for a free burrito for the day after Cinco de Mayo (provided you are married to a teacher, like me). It’s how not-food-bloggers blog about food on Cinco de Mayo! I’m calling that good enough.

Perhaps I can claim that I just have summer fever after surviving April OMG? The warmer weather this past week has me seriously craving summertime foods! Tis the season to ask Mr. P to fire up the grill. And while he’s downstairs perfectly searing our meat, I’m upstairs filling out the plate with beautifully green sides. My most recent accompaniment to his grilled entrée? Parsley pesto potatoes, with a recipe courtesy of Beth at Budget Bytes.

I scaled her recipe way down and used just four medium-sized Yukon Gold potatoes (I didn’t weigh them, but let’s say somewhere around 1.5 pounds total).

Dice ‘em up like you’re gonna make my balsamic roasted potatoes! I tossed them in oil and a bit of salt and pepper before sticking them in a 400-degree oven for about thirty minutes.

I’ve mentioned before that I don’t arrange all the potato chunks peels-side-down just because I enjoy things organized neatly. The peel side is less likely to burn and stick, so you don’t have to toss them halfway and they’ll still cook evenly!

While the potatoes are roasting, it’s time to make the parsley pesto. I used about half a bunch of parsley and picked the leaves straight into my little food processor.

Then I added a bit of salt, a tablespoon of bottled lemon juice, and a quarter-cup of parmesan cheese (the grated stuff from a can works just fine):

I also quickly sautéed a teaspoon of minced garlic in some olive oil over medium heat on the stove. Beth’s recipe calls for raw garlic, but I prefer the mellower flavor that comes with cooking the garlic.

Once the garlic is in the food processor with the parsley et al.: PULSE!

Then I mixed in a few tablespoons of olive oil. Unfortunately I was making such a small amount that even my tiny food processor just flung it up on the walls, rather than emulsifying it all together. Hmmmm. Ehh, I ended up stirring it together. It worked in the end, even if it wasn’t particularly creamy.

I suppose that’s a good reason to make the full recipe on Beth’s blog rather than scaling down, if you’re really into that authentic pesto texture. For me, I was happy with a smaller amount. And even if it wasn’t that creamy, all the flavors were there!

By the time the pesto is ready, the potatoes should nearly be done!

Just stir in the pesto and you are good. to. go.

So summery! This would make a great dish to take to a cookout – Beth suggests stirring in a bit of mayo to make it like a potato salad. She also recommended turning them into a hashbrown-type dish for breakfast. Or maybe... try them at a Cinco de Mayo celebration. Whatever. You do you! We just enjoyed them with roasted broccoli and grilled chicken... what every summer dinner should be made of.

Enjoy this dish... and the warmer weather!

Finally, there’s no meal plan this week... as I won’t be spending most of my evenings this week in the kitchen. That’s right, I’m traveling again. I’ll fill you in later!