Pesto Week – Tuesday

Dear readers, welcome to pesto week here at A Glass of Milk.  I’m hoping your garden is bursting at the seams with basil, just like K’s.  Since she asked me what to do with all that green, we’re spending the week talking about my favorite herb, and my favorite sauce.  Which also means taking a trip down memory lane.  Enjoy the ride!

Most people have figured out that you can put pesto on pasta with darn good foolproof results.  But pesto has a multitude of other uses, and one of my favorites is as sauce for a pizza.  Tomato sauce is so predictable.

Here’s my recipe for salami, ricotta, and tomato flatbread.

Here’s Giada’s recipe for heirloom tomato and basil tart.

And below is a look back at my flatbread with pesto.  I used arugula pesto for dipping, but any pesto works.

If you know how to utilize it, your freezer can be your best friend.  Say, for example, you have two friends coming over to watch the Real Housewives of New York reunion.  And you realize at the last minute, that if people come over at 7:00, they generally expect some kind of food.  That happened to me yesterday.  And my freezer was there for me.

Turn to your freezer and your problems are solved.  If you’ve stocked it correctly.  You see, every time you make some sort of sauce, or some sort of dough, every time you see meat on sale, stick it in the freezer.  Or at least, the leftovers when you’ve finished dinner.

Because that way, when you want to make an impressive appetizer, your problems are solved.  I had a batch of BC pizza dough left over in the freezer and some arugula pesto from the sandwich to top all sandwiches.  I also had these on the balcony:

So herbed flatbread with olive oil was born.

For it, you need

  • 1/2 recipe of Barefoot Contessa pizza dough (aka pissaladiere dough in Barefoot in Paris)
  • olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • chopped herbs (I used rosemary and thyme; 1 part rosemary to two parts thyme)
  • And some leftover pesto is optional for dipping

Preheat the oven to 450.  Roll out the dough and transfer it to a baking sheet sprinkled with cornmeal (so the dough doesn’t stick).  Poke the dough all over with your fingertips, to make it dimply, and drizzle with olive oil.

Sprinkle the dough with herbs and salt and bake for 12-15 minutes, until it is totally flat and crispy and wonderful.  As soon as it’s cool enough to touch, break it into pieces and serve with pesto.

This is the kind of food I could live on forever.  It’s simple, but not dumbed down.  It’s easy to make, and can be prepared in advance.  And then there’s taste.  This recipe packs so much flavor into each bite.  Who needs chips when you could be snacking on flatbread?

So far, project entertain and find excuses to make cakes and tons of other food has been coming along swimmingly.  I’ve got so much more to share in the days and weeks ahead.  Here’s to summer!

One thought on “Pesto Week – Tuesday

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