Homemade Basil Pesto with a twist 

Happy Spring to those of you who only follow my foodie posts 🙂 

You should know by now I’m all about healthy, clean eating all year round! But I’m sure you’ve also noticed I don’t pass up on goodies like holiday cookies, hot cocoa on a snowy day or a heavy French dish done right ;] 

 With Spring approaching and summer right around the corner, it’s time for a little detox. I’m a firm believer that once or twice a year, you should give your body some rest. Whether it’s low-carb, juicing or even the zone, take some time to “clean up” and focus on eating right, supplying your body with everything it needs 🙂 

Today, I’ll share my favorite basil pesto recipe. It’s healthy and flavorful, goes well with whole grain pastas, salads or even used as a spread with some cherry tomatoes (the last one being a personal favorite)! It takes less than 5 minutes to prepare, so I don’t want any excuses!!! 
You will need: 
2 cups of fresh cleaned basil leaves 

1 cup baby spinach (my twist, making it optional)

1/4 cup freshly shredded Parmesan cheese

1/4 cup virgin oil

3-4 minced garlic cloves

1/3 cups pine nuts or walnuts (optional)
Directions: 

Blend all the greens, nuts and minced garlic cloves on medium, switching to high for 30 seconds to a minute (depending on your blender). Switch back to medium, adding the Parmesan. Finally, on low, slowly add the virgin oil. 

A few tips: 

Don’t cut any of the leaves, if you absolutely have to, just rip them up with your hands. 

If your goal is to lose weight, skip the nuts and add only 1-2 tea spoons of virgin oil, just enough to blend the rest of the ingridients. 
Have a healthy Spring, everyone! 

-Love, Silvia Mèlange 

  

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Mushroom-cheese Risoni

TGIF, Lovies!!!

I was so busy this week; I had no time or energy to post anything! To make it up to you, I’ll share another favorite recipe. Risoni is rice shaped pasta, pairing amazing with all kinds of veggies and cheese! It’s quick and super easy. The risoni recipe I’m talking about tastes rich and could be used as a Valentine’s Day meal if you chose to spend it at home. I have noticed my nieces always ask for seconds, so it’s one of these Perfect-for-every-occasion-recipes 🙂

 

You will need:

A pack of risoni noodles

For the sauce:

400 g mushrooms

2 white onions (cut in cubes)

200 ml cooking cream

100 ml beer (light)

200 g smoked cheese

200 g shredded cheese (gouda, ny style cheddar)

2 garlic cloves (minced)

1 t.s. fresh rosemary, thyme, salt, pepper, v. oil

Freshly grinded parmesan to taste

 

 

How to make it:

 

Boil the risoni in salted water and a drop of virgin oil like you prepare all noodles.

The sauce:

In a sauce pan, heat up the oil, flavoring it with one of the garlic cloves and the fresh rosemary. Once your kitchen starts smelling amazing, remove the rosemary and add the mushrooms, onions and beer, sauté lightly, reducing to medium heat. Once the beer is mostly evaporated, add the cooking cream, smoked cheese and the rest of the spices, reducing the heat to low, stirring every 5 minutes or as needed. Once your mixture begins to blend and look creamy**, add the shredded cheese and continue stirring until it melts, fully blending it in.

By that time, your risoni should be ready as well. Drain them and rinse with cold water. Add the risoni to the cheesy mixture and stir until it’s blended. Serve with parmesan up to taste.

It pairs up great with green salads and dry white wines.

** If your cheese sauce is too thick, add 50 ml of milk or more as needed.

 

Cheers, Silvia Mèlange

 

risoni