Tag Archives: weeknight dinner

Easy Pesto Sauce

Easy Pesto Sauce
recipes, pesto, parmesan, parmesan cheese, basil, fresh herbs, healthy, weeknight dinner, easy, healthy, extra virgin olive oil, garlic, vegetarian

Gluten-free angel hair pasta with homemade pesto sauce, topped with halved grape tomatoes and shaved parmesan cheese

While Mike was holding down the RV last week, I was doing a tour of Spain, enjoying all the sights, sounds and food of the country. I never knew I liked pesto until I had it freshly made and served on the side in a gravy boat at Los Alfonsinos in Barcelona. As soon as I got back to the States and our coach, I knew I had to make it for Mike.

The two primary ingredients in pesto offer a lot of health benefits. Basil’s flavonoids and volatile oils have unique anti-bacterial properties and health-protecting effects on cell structure. Olive oil protects against heart disease, lowers cholesterol, normalizes blood clotting, and benefits insulin levels and blood sugar control.

To make this super easy, super healthy meal a snap, I used the RV-sized Magic Bullet Blender to make my own pesto sauce. I love, love, love the Magic Bullet because it handles all of our blending needs without taking up valuable countertop real estate. It also makes the perfect amount for two people.

Because Mike is slightly gluten-intolerant, we used gluten-free angel hair, but you could make this with any kind of pasta or even ravioli. I left out the pine nuts, but feel free to add a couple of tablespoons if you like. A little pesto goes a long way, so this batch should be enough for a half box of angel hair, cooked.

Ingredients:

  • 12 fresh basil leaves
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1/8 – 1/4 cup parmesan cheese

Directions:

  • Place all the ingredients in your Magic Bullet or blender.
  • Process to a paste.
  • Stir through cooked pasta and top with sliced grape tomatoes and more parmesan cheese.

Simple roasted potatoes

Simple roasted potatoes

MeatloafAndPotatoes1

When we’re boondocking, we keep the slide in, the jacks up, and conserve our water as much as possible.  We often eat out during those times, but occasionally, after a a long day of driving, it’s nice to have a home-cooked meal.  I handle water rationing by coming up with something semi-homemade that doesn’t take a lot of pots and pans.

These roasted potatoes are a great accompaniment to a store-bought meatloaf.  I got both at Trader Joe’s.  The meatloaf was in its own microwavable package, and the potato medley came in a mesh bag that let the colors shine through.  I loved the multi-hued small spuds!  Mike was a little thrown off at first because he thought the purple potatoes were rotten.  

The bag held about 16 potatoes, so we had leftovers for breakfast potatoes the next morning.  Dip into a bagged blend of greens from the fridge for a side salad, and you’ve got a complete meal that doesn’t dirty every dish in the rig.

RoastedPotatoes

Ingredients:

  • Medley of small potatoes (My bag had about 16 potatoes in it.)
  • coconut oil, melted (about 1/8 cup, just enough to coat)
  • Minced garlic, to taste
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

TraderJoesMeatloaf

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  • Wash potatoes and cut into rough slices.
  • In a medium bowl, toss potatoes with coconut oil, garlic, salt and pepper.
  • Roast uncovered for about 30 minutes in the oven until they’re fork tender.
  • Serve with a slice of meatloaf and a side salad.

MeatloafAndPotatoes2

Skillet Dinner: Strawberry Pork Chops

Skillet Dinner: Strawberry Pork Chops

photo

This is an easy dish to make after a long day of driving and setting up the RV.  Serve it with a side salad for a complete meal.

A caveat: Be sure your dining companion doesn’t mind mixing meat and fruit in their entree.  I had forgotten that Mike prefers to keep the two separate. But, he was a troooper and ate one of the chops just because I’d taken the time to cook them.  Personally, I liked ’em so much I ate two!

Ingredients:

  • 4 pork chops, 1/2- to 3/4-inch thick
  • 2 teaspoons coconut oil
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup strawberry preserves (I prefer St. Dalfour because it’s sweetened only with fruit juice.)
  • 1 tablespoon mustard
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

Directions:

  • Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Add pork chops. Cook and turn until brown on both sides.
  • Reduce heat to low, and in a small bowl, mix together preserves, mustard and vinegar.
  • Pour sauce over chops, cover skillet, and cook for about 8 minutes, until the sauce has thickened and the chops are cooked through.
  • Serve with a side salad.