My First Poke

We eat most fish on Fridays and Saturdays, since I prefer to eat fish on the day that I bought it. The well-known Albert Cuyp market in Amsterdam is just a few blocks from the office, and I should take more advantage of that to go there and get fish during my lunch break so we can have fish on other days of the week as well as we both love fish.

When I was on the Albert Cuyp market I saw some nice tuna and thought it was time I would give ‘poke’ a try. Poke is a Hawaiian dish that I had never heard of before, despite having been to Hawaii for a week two years ago. I had noticed it on Richard McGary’s blog REMCooks.com before, but only when I saw the photo of the Baby Lady smugly enjoying poke I knew I really had to try this 🙂 I was not disappointed, as we both loved it and I will definitely make poke again.

Poke is a Hawaiian dish made with raw tuna (called ahi in Hawaii, either big eye tuna or yellowfin tuna) and a variety of other ingredients. I based my first attempt upon Richard’s post about Pesto Poke, but I added some avocado as well and replaced the cilantro with parsley.  Continue reading “My First Poke”

Pasta with Green Beans and Savory Pesto (Pasta ai Fagioli e Pesto di Santoreggia)

Green Beans (also known as String Beans or French Beans) are in season right now, which means that beans from around here are abundant and we don’t have to make do with imported stuff from Northern Africa.  Green beans and haricots verts are essentially the same thing, but the name “haricots verts” outside of France is usually reserved for the thinnest ones only.

Some months ago Richard of REMCooks.com posted a chicken recipe that used a herb called savory. I thought I had never heard of savory before, but that wasn’t entirely true because I did know it under the Dutch name “bonenkruid” even though I didn’t remember ever tasting it. The name “bonenkruid” suggests that it’s good with beans (it means “bean herb”) so when I saw a fresh savory plant at the produce department, I decided to try making pasta with green beans and savory pesto. The savory pesto has a punchy taste, very savory indeed, and did go great with the beans. The savory smells a bit like fresh oregano, but the taste is stronger. Thanks Richard for the inspiration. Here’s what I did…
Continue reading “Pasta with Green Beans and Savory Pesto (Pasta ai Fagioli e Pesto di Santoreggia)”

Trenette alla Genovese

Each region of Italy has its own pasta dishes. The most famous foodstuff from Liguria is pesto, and the two typical pasta dishes from Liguria with pesto are Lasagne alla Genovese and Trenette alla Genovese. Both are best with pesto made from scratch using pestle and mortar. Trenette alla Genovese are trenette cooked with haricots verts and potatoes, and served with pesto alla genovese. Continue reading “Trenette alla Genovese”

Lasagne alla Genovese

When you think of lasagne, you probably think of the famous Lasagne alla Bolognese with bolognese ragù and bechamel sauce. There are however more types of lasagne, such as Lasagna alla Napoletana with ragù alla napoletana, meatballs, sausage, and ricotta, or this Lasagne alla Genovese with pesto. I had never made it before but I will definitely make it again as it was delicious and surprisingly light. Lasagne alla Genovese is made with a mixture of pesto alla genovese and bechamel sauce, to which vegetables can be added. In this case I added roasted zucchini, an idea I got from the Italian blog Il Marito Perfetto (the perfect husband). Continue reading “Lasagne alla Genovese”

Sous-vide Salmon-Pesto Roulade with Haricots Verts

The inspiration for this dish was provided by Richard McGary’s Salmon Roulade with Cilantro Citrus Pesto on Mango Corn Salsa, but it is quite different. A salmon fillet is butterflied, filled with a basil-lemon pesto, rolled up into a roulade, cooked sous-vide, and cut into slices that are served on haricots verts. Salmon cooked sous-vide to 43C/109F is amazingly velvety, which contrasts nicely with the crispy haricots verts. The round buttery flavor of the salmon is complemented by the fresh taste of the basil-lemon pesto. Continue reading “Sous-vide Salmon-Pesto Roulade with Haricots Verts”

Pasta with Peas and Pesto (Mafaldine Piselli e Pesto)

This veggie pasta dish may seem very similar to last week’s pasta with peas and tomato, but the flavor is much ‘greener’. I’ve used the same type of curly tagliatelle called mafaldine, but feel free to use regular tagliatelle if you can’t find those. Peas and pesto work together very well. I wanted to freshen up the dish by adding some celery, and it worked like a charm. I made the pesto à la minute, but I’d recommend to make it the day before instead and keep it in the fridge so the flavors can develop. Ingredients For 2 servings … Continue reading Pasta with Peas and Pesto (Mafaldine Piselli e Pesto)

Pasta with chicken, pesto, haricots verts, and sundried tomatoes

This is the first Italian-style dish that I created myself and I’m still making it on a regular basis because it’s so good. It’s not authentic and the odds are against me that an Italian would ever make a similar dish, but who cares as long as it’s good 😉 This is simple home cooking and not haute cuisine. I created this dish in the late nineties because I thought that since pesto goes well with chicken, pesto goes well with haricots verts and pesto goes well with sundried tomatoes, the combination of all of them should be nice. And … Continue reading Pasta with chicken, pesto, haricots verts, and sundried tomatoes

How to make your own Pesto alla Genovese

Pesto is one of those things that is so much better when you make it yourself rather than buy it in a store! I’m talking about the most common and famous type of pesto here: Pesto alla Genovese. This sauce is made from basil, pine nuts, garlic, extra virgin olive oil, parmigiano reggiano, aged pecorino, and some salt. If you buy a jar of pesto in a store, chances are that it will contain parsley, sunflower oil, cashew nuts, or even potato. Not to mention preservatives. But the worst problem is that store-bought pesto in most cases has a strong … Continue reading How to make your own Pesto alla Genovese