Monday, May 31, 2010

Oven Free Dinner

Steve and I live on the second floor of a very old building, situated in such a way that we get no air flow through our apartment.  Come summertime, we live in a sauna.  The minute we turn the oven on it's like we've moved into the center of a volcano.  So this summer we've decided to get smart about it and stop roasting giant pieces of meat when it's 90 degrees outside, and start eating things that are fresh, easy, and require zero use of the oven.

So last night we decided to make some things we've been wanting to make for a  very long time: hummus and pesto.  In fact last year when we bought a food processor, the main reason was so that we could make these two things; we hadn't yet.  We also whipped up a tabbouleh salad which is something we've been making a lot lately cause it's sooo tasty.

We had also picked up a delicious loaf of bread at the farmers market on Saturday so we used that to dip into our hummus and pesto.  Preparation was easy, no heat was created, and the results were spectacular.  When it's really hot out and you just want something light and refreshing, this would be a meal I would highly recommend.

The Hummus recipe is from our friends Mike and Rachel and can be found at their blog here.

The pesto and the tabbouleh come from Mark Bittman's book How to Cook Everything

  • 2 loosely packed cups basil
  • salt to taste
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts, lightly toasted on a dry skillet
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
In a food processor combine the basil, salt, garlic, nuts, and half the oil.  Now Mr. Bittman suggests using 1/2 a cup of oil, I found this to be wayyyyy to much and had to go back in and add more basil and pine nuts to make up for it.  So after you add your 1/4 cup olive oil I would check the consistency and flavor and then slowly adjust from there.  I then added half the cheese and blended it in and then the 1/4 cup of cheese I just stirred in at the end.

  • 1/2 cup fine grind or medium grind (#1 or #2) bulgur, you can use course ground but you will have to make that with hot water and wait for it to cool in the fridge.
  • 2 cups minced parsley leaves
  • 1 cup minced mint leaves
  • 2 cups cored, seeded, and chopped tomatoes
  • 1 small onion
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil - again I think Mark Bittman is a bit heavy handed with the oil and so we didn't end up adding the whole 1/2 cup.  Start slowly and keep tasting until it's where you want it.
  • 4 TBSP lemon juice
  • salt & pepper
Cover bulgur in water and let soak for about 30 minutes then drain.  Try to get as much of the water out as possible.  After that it's simple combine everything else into a bowl and serve! 



LinnyMay said...

Nice. I mushed chick-peas the other day. That's kinda hummasy.