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Lime Mint Mojitos

  • 1 teaspoon of sugar
  • 1 large sprig of Lime mint*
  • 1.5 oz. white rum
  • 1/2 fresh lime cut in quarters
  • Club soda
  • Ice

Place the sugar and mint leaves at the bottom of a tall glass. Crush the mint into the sugar using a muddler or the back of a spoon. For a dirty Mojito, muddle well so that the pieces of mint are very small. Squeeze lime quarters into glass; drop the limes into the mix. At this point I mix well, pushing down on the lime with a spoon, extracting more juice and some of the oil in the rind. Add white rum, ice, top off with club soda and stir well. Garnish with fresh sprig of mint if you like; serve immediately.

For a clean Mojito, simply strain the mixture over ice

*do not use peppermint

Fresh Basil Pesto

  • 2 cups fresh basil leaves, packed
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan-Reggiano or Romano cheese
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts
  • 3 medium sized garlic cloves, minced
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Combine the basil in with the pine nuts, pulse a few times in a food processor. Add the garlic, pulse a few times more.

Slowly add the olive oil in a constant stream while the food processor is on. Stop to scrape down the sides of the food processor with a rubber spatula. Add the grated cheese and pulse again until blended. Add a pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.

Serve with pasta, or over baked potatoes, or spread over toasted baguette slices.

Makes about 1 cup.

If you want to freeze the pesto, omit the cheese (it doesn't freeze well). Line an ice cube tray with plastic wrap, and fill each pocket with the pesto. Freeze and then remove from the ice tray and store in a freezer bag. When you want to use, defrost and add in grated Parmesan or Romano.

Chimichurri

  • 4 cups coarsely chopped parsley
  • 1 tsp oregano, finely chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 shallot, finely minced
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1-1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/3 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 Tbsp red pepper flakes

Mix the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients, add the salt & pepper, then let it sit at least one hour before serving.

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