Pesto, handpies, and a great margarita

It has been a damn good week of eating. Summer produce can make meals both simpler and more delicious, and I am extremely appreciative of that seasonal gift.

Because mint is an herb I can grow successfully -unlike basil and rosemary, both of which seem like herbs that black-thumbed idiots can grow; what does that make me? hmm..- and I love its clean, bright flavor, I use it regularly in favorites like my mint pistachio pesto.

Earlier this week, I oven-roasted some beautiful halibut and then spooned the mint pesto atop the filet while still warm. C'est magnifique!

 oven-roasted halibut with mint pistachio pesto

oven-roasted halibut with mint pistachio pesto

The tomato salad came the night after the halibut when I went against my better judgment and bought some fresh sockeye salmon. It was so stunningly just-from-the-sea that I was certain this filet would be the one to change my mind.

It did not.

Sockeye is too flat and too dense for my liking. Thank goodness for the luscious toms.

 collard and chorizo handpies (pre-bake)

collard and chorizo handpies (pre-bake)

And the next night came collard and chorizo handpies which are always a treat. And later, a grilled pizza.

This afternoon, at a first grade swim party, my good friend, M, brought me a huge, fragrant bunch of basil from her yard. She is not a black-thumbed herb idiot, and I am often the lucky recipient of her success.

It was very hot today but because I'd bought more than a few flowers at the big annuals sale at the nursery yesterday and so needed to go gang-busters in my garden after the swim party, I decided, as I walked up the stairs sweaty and muddy and mosquito bitten and whooped after planting, that we'd be having pasta with fresh basil pesto tonight.

 happy Em

happy Em

But first a shower. And then a margarita made with my favorite new strawberry and meyer lemon shrub* from Shrub & Co. And then a Harry Potter #7 read-aloud and then the pasta -bucatini- with fresh basil pesto, hold the garlic and pine nuts tonight to keep things light, and chopped tomatoes.

And now to bed. YAY!

*What is a shrub? A shrub is a marvelous concoction crafted from fruit, sugar and vinegar. It's yet another method of preservation though for a very different application than say, jam or pickles. Shrubs are used in cocktails (or mocktails) and provide both sweetness and tang. Shrub & Co makes outstanding shrubs: Blood Orange Cardamom and Strawberry & Meyer Lemon are two of my favorites.