Archive for the tag “pesto”

Prime Rib French Dip with Thyme Au Jus

This sandwich is seriously delicious! It is hearty, meaty, gooey and gets a little soggy when you dip it, which is so perfect with the crispy bread!  Do yourself a favor and use the sliced prime rib available in the deli to make this french dip extra special.  If you can’t get fresh sliced prime rib than just grab roast beef and still make this sandwich!


IMG_2123The line up: sliced prime rib, white cheddar cheese, basil, a fresh ciabatta roll, au jus and fresh thyme.

Optional add ons:  pesto, sriracha aioli, arugula, different cheese, tomato and more!

IMG_2125In a small pan simmer together au jus concentrate with some chicken stock, beef broth or water.  Toss in a sprig of thyme to enhance the flavor.

IMG_2126Cut ciabatta roll in half and smear pesto on each side. Or do pesto on one side and sriracha aioli on the other like I did for my husbands!! Place a few basil leaves on one side.

IMG_2127Pile it up with some aged white cheddar (sliced thin so it will melt)

IMG_2129Assemble the sandwich and toast for a few minutes to melt the cheese if desired.  Dip in au jus and enjoy!

A couple tips:

*Dip meat in warm au jus before piling it onto the bread to enhance the flavor and to warm it up.

*Grill the sandwich for a few minutes if you want melted cheese. Otherwise just serve once assembled.

*Add a sauce (pesto or sriracha aioli like listed above) or your own favorite to moisten the roll a little.

*Trim the sliced prime rib to remove excess fat so your sandwich doesn’t end up too tough

*Go make this sandwich now and ENJOY! It literally takes minutes to assemble!


Deli Style Reuben Sandwich {made at home}

Gooey cheese, crispy bread, tangy sauerkraut, spicy sriracha aioli, creamy pesto, hearty pastrami and crunchy arugula.  How much more of a description do you need before you go and make this sandwich!?!? This is a serious sandwich and it will feel like you are at any sandwich shop with just a few simple steps.  Seriously, just go make it.

IMG_2051Check out all those layers

IMG_2042A few of the items you need…

IMG_2044Add some pesto to one slice of rye bread and some sriracha aioli to the other. Be generous! You’ll thank me later!

I made my pesto but it is an easy thing to grab while at the market

IMG_2046Pile your bread high with fresh sliced deli pastrami and swiss cheese. I like to add a few slices so when it melts it helps all the layers stick together.

IMG_2047Finish off each slice with some sauerkraut and arugula.

IMG_2048Stack it high and get ready to grill

IMG_2049Add a little butter to a grill pan and toast it up on one side. You could easily use a frying pan also.

IMG_2050Once the bread is nice a toasty flip it over. To get the cheese to melt I like to cover it with a lid to keep the heat in.  If you have a panini press by all means use that! I have even made it in a waffle iron!

IMG_2053Lots of layers and a nice crunch from the bread

IMG_2054As good as or better than any deli style sandwich.

Whole wheat spaghetti with zucchini

A great way to get your kids to eat their veggies is in a few simple steps.  1. Let them pick out the veggies they want to try at the grocery store.  They will be excited to try something they chose and love the sense of being part of the cooking process. 2. Make them look and taste good. (ie. this pasta dish). 3. Feed them the stuff they “don’t like” when they are really hungry and before you give them the stuff they do like such as fruit, snacks or bread. Try this easy ands delicious pasta dish with just a few simple ingredients.


Slice zucchini, yellow squash, onions, garlic and mushrooms into similar sizes so they cook evenly.


My daughter could not get enough of the zucchini, yellow squash, onions and garlic.  She’s still a little unsure of the mushrooms.


I forgot to take pictures of the sauce preparation but here’s what I did: sauté the veggies until still slightly crisp.  Add a scoop of pesto, a scoop of ricotta cheese, salt, pepper to taste and a little pasta water from the cooked pasta to create a sauce.  Add the cooked pasta (I used whole wheat spaghetti) and sprinkle with parmesan cheese!


Feel free to modify the ingredients for your family such as different veggies or a different pasta.


Pasta smothered in cheese… how  can you go wrong!?!

IMG_7629It’s sure to please everyone!

Cheese tray (with dried fruit crackers!)

What’s not to love about a cheese tray?! There’s cheese, crackers, other yummy bits of snacks and it’s so easy to serve.  Plus, it has a wow factor for those you are serving it to! Make any dinner party more elegant.  It’s an easy appetizer you don’t have to tend to.  People have the ability to create their own bite and the options are endless! I couldn’t resist these cute and delicious dried fruit crackers by Simple and Crisp.  Not only are they are great statement piece they taste good too!

IMG_7671A cheese tray is easy to arrange right on a cutting board.  It keeps it casual and allows people to cut pieces for themselves.


These dried fruit crackers were perfect with this hard goat’s milk cheese from Spain!  Be sure to pick a strong (not stinky) enough cheese to stand up to the crackers.

I recommend this Campobello Spanish cheese, a sharp cheddar or even a goat cheese.


IMG_7656Simple and Crisp crackers are so unique and perfect for any cheese or appetizer tray.  Try all 4: apple, pear, orange and blood orange. You get the real fruit flavor with the crunch of a cracker!

IMG_7658Here’s how I chose to serve my cheese and crackers.  3 types of crackers: orange and pear Simple and Crisp, Raincoast Crisp cranberry hazelnut and apple slices!

IMG_7669I then realized I needed some color so I added some fresh olives from the self-serve olive bar! Any variety will do!

IMG_7659How cute are those crackers!

IMG_7661I love the fruit flavor plus the crispness of the cracker!

IMG_7662Cracker, cheese and apple: the perfect combination.  Crunchy, tangy, creamy, crisp and sweet.

IMG_7663The orange slice is so pretty!

IMG_7665A true classic!

IMG_7666Ok, then I got a little crazy but the pesto was such an awesome addition.  Grab a pre-made pesto in the deli section or make your own! This is a pea, kale and hazelnut pesto.


Pesto Lasagna- fresh pasta and extra cheesy!

I just realized as I got to the bottom of this post that it is St. Patrick’s Day and I just randomly made this dish and posted it on a day dedicated to green! Not only is this a green lasagna but I served it on a green plate.  For someone who is not at all interested in holidays this sure worked out perfectly!!!

I was in NYC last weekend and basically started drooling when I saw a pesto lasagna (like the one below) show up at the table next to my mine. I had to figure out a way to replicate the dish because I had not stopped thinking about it since I saw it.  At Harbor Greens I was able to get fresh lasagna noodles, all the ingredients for the pesto as well as the 3 different cheeses needed and this delicious beautiful lasagna came together in no time!

IMG_7600I think I was able to get 8 layers of lasagna which made it so hearty and flavorful!

IMG_7593The main ingredients: pea and cilantro pesto (recipe below), mozzarella, ricotta, parmesan and fresh lasagna noodles!

IMG_7594For the pesto I combined 1 1/2 cups thawed frozen peas, 1 cup fresh cilantro, salt, pepper, 2 tbsp pine nuts, 3 cloves of garlic and olive oil in a food processor until well blended.  Season as needed for your desired flavor.  I then added 3/4 pesto with about 3/4 cup of ricotta cheese to make the creamy pesto filling.

IMG_7595Brush the bottom of a baking dish (I used an 8X8) with olive oil, so the lasagna doesn’t stick.  Boil lasagna noodles in salted water for 1 minute and then drain on a dish towel.  Place noodles in a single layers in the bottom of the pan and smear some of the pesto ricotta mixture on the top of the noodle.

IMG_7596Your layers can really be however you want but I did as follows. A layer of the pesto ricotta mixture with the fresh peas followed by a layer of shredded mozzarella and parmesan.  Alternate layers until you get to the top of the pan or run out of noodles.  As I said, I got about 8 layers but would have loved even more!!

IMG_7597Cover the top layers with some more of the pesto ricotta mixture as well as cheese and sprinkle with olive oil to keep it moist.  Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes on 350 degrees or until warm through.  Remove foil and cook until top is brown and bubbly!

Who doesn’t love gooey cheese!

IMG_7599Check out all those layers! Once you use fresh pasta you will never go back!!! The noodles are so fluffy and add the best texture to any dish!

IMG_7601I love how pretty the green pesto is with the peas! It just occurred to me I am posting a very green dish for St. Patrick’s Day!!


IMG_7604I topped my piece with a few red pepper flakes for a little added heat!

IMG_7605Ok, so go make this dish! It’t simple, satisfying, every member of your family will eat it, it’s hearty enough for a main dish Aed a salad and enjoy!

Or be like me and eat it for breakfast!

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