Sunday, November 9, 2008

Week of November 9, 2008

This is a busy and a short week for me . . . I'm headed out of town in the early morning hours on Friday, so the boys will be on their own for dinner for three nights while Leah and I party it up on the East Coast. Life with children seems to ebb and flow like the tide - up and down dramatically. We are currently barely treading water around here at dinner time so I need to pre-make my meals earlier in the day or have something ready in the slow cooker. The baby has seemingly overnight become a fast-as-lightening, curious, and demanding little force to be reckoned with. She needs her dinner at exactly the same time every single night - or else. I'm struggling to problem solve and fix our current dinner-time chaos. I swear a month ago things were running smoothly at 5:00 pm . . . now you would swear our house is something out of a horror movie.

Sunday: Crock-Pot Pasta Fagioli (only meal I didn't get to last week)
Monday: Weekend Leftovers or Freezer dinner
Tuesday: Chicken Enchiladas (where it calls for taco sauce I use a can of enchilada sauce that I buy at Loblaws here in Ottawa)
Wednesday: Creamy Noodle Bake
Thursday: Garlic Scape Pesto with Pasta
Friday: Boys On Own
Saturday: Boys On Own

The Creamy Noodle Bake is a favourite here - I found this recipe in the middle of the night on the Food Network when I was nursing Leah, and the family loved it. I usually make a few changes, so I'll try to document it so I can add it next time.

I made tons of this Garlic Scape Pesto this summer, and froze it in small batches so we could add it to pasta as we wanted. I actually didn't know what a garlic scape was before it arrived in one of our food baskets a few months ago. They are delicious.

Garlic Scape Pesto

1 cup garlic scapes (about 8 or 9 scapes), top flowery part removed, cut into ¼-inch slices
1/3 cup walnuts
¾ cup olive oil
¼-1/2 cup grated parmigiano
½ teaspoon salt
black pepper to taste

Place scapes and walnuts in the bowl of a food processor and whiz until well combined and somewhat smooth. Slowly drizzle in oil and process until integrated. With a rubber spatula, scoop pesto out of bowl and into a mixing bowl. Add parmigiano to taste; add salt and pepper. Makes about 6 ounces of pesto. Keeps for up to one week in an air-tight container in the refrigerator.

For ½ pound short pasta such as penne, add about 2 tablespoons of pesto to cooked pasta and stir until pasta is well coated.

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