Wednesday, January 04, 2012

What's for Dinner?

photo by Joy Newman
please excuse the photos, food photography is very difficult!

Ravioli Salad with Cilantro Pesto, Olives and Pepitas
Heidi Swanson,
taken from Everyday Food, Special Issue

If you don't like cilantro, this is not for you.  However, my family, who adores pesto, loved the fresh change to our usual basil-based pesto.  Trader Joe's sells pepitas.  To toast them, heat a small frying pan, add the seeds and toss until fragrant and slightly brown. This is a great recipe to bring to a picnic or potluck as it can be served warm or at room temperature.

1 c lightly packed fresh cilantro
1/3 c Parmesan, grated
3 garlic cloves, peeled
2 T fresh lemon juice, plus more
1/3 c hulled pumpkin seeds (pepitas), toasted
2/3 c olive oil
1 lb. frozen or fresh cheese ravioli
1/2 c oil-cured pitted olives, such as Kalamata, chopped
fresh thyme leaves, optional

1.  Bring a large pot of water to boil. Meanwhile make the cilantro pesto: In a blender, combine cilantro, Parmesan, garlic, lemon juice, all but 1 T of pepitas, and a splash of oil. Blend until smooth. With  machine running, slowly add remaining oil until pesto comes together into a vibrant green sauce.  Season to taste with salt and more lemon juice, if desired.

2.  Generously salt boiling water, add ravioli, and cook according to package instructions.  Drain, transfer to a large bowl, and immediately toss with a big spoonful of pesto.  Allow pesto to absorb, 1 minute, then add 1/2 c of pesto along with all but 1 T of olives.  Toss gently but thoroughly and add more pesto, if desired.

3.  Sprinkle with remaining olives, pepitas, and thyme.  Serve warm or at room temperature.  (Refrigerate remaining pesto in an airtight container for up to 2 days.)


pennymalley said...

I had to laugh when I read this because I am one who HATES cilantro. Isn't it funny, people either love it or hate it? People tend to have strong opinions about this little herb. That said, this recipe sounds yummy- do you think it would work to either leave out the offending herb, or could something else be substituted? Thanks for sharing this!

SLO Classical Academy said...

Penny, try using basil instead. Regular pesto always tastes delicious, right? Let me know how it turns out. :) Joy