Classic Minestrone with Sun-dried Tomato Pesto

Minestrone Soup with Sundried Tomato Pesto #recipe via @cooksmarts

The previous two recipes this month have all focused on how to get more flavor out of proteins (see Tofu with Curried Cabbage and Carrots and Pork Tenderloin with Cran-Balsamic Sauce). Today's Minestrone Soup with Sun-dried Tomato Pesto recipe focuses on how to make a soup more flavorful with a simple hand-chopped pesto. Clearly, you can use these types of pestos well beyond soups, but it's … [Read more...]

How to make a hand-chopped pesto

hand chopped pesto

I know that a lot of you will be firing up the grill later this week to celebrate the 4th of July. Whether you're grilling burgers, chicken, or vegetables, if you really want to up the flavor ante, you'll have to go beyond marination. Clearly a tasty marinade provides a good start, but you also need a strong finish. Today's "How-To Tuesday" shows you how to make a hand-chopped pesto that will … [Read more...]

Pasta with basil pesto and peas

Pasta with pesto and peas

I love, love, love pasta, but I try to make it a treat instead of an easy fall-back dinner. Some easy ways to do this is to use fresh pasta and to make your own sauce. For summer, my favorite sauce is just a quick and easy basil-based pesto that's made in my food processor. It's simple and delicious, but pesto is also perfect for the season because no heat is needed, keeping out kitchen just a … [Read more...]

Dirty Pesto Shrimp | “A Week’s Worth of Pesto Uses” Meal Plan

Dirty Pesto Shrimp | "A Week's Worth of Pesto" Meal Plan | Cook Smarts by Jess Dang

  You'll be seeing a lot more meal plans on Cook Smarts in the near future including a newsletter launch in the fall. All subscribers to the newsletter will get a meal plan every week in their inbox that'll be peppered with cooking know-how, tips, and suggestions. There won't be anything fancy in the menu - just simple, healthy, doable meals that everyone can cook and enjoy. We figure we … [Read more...]

What do I do with leftover herbs?

What do I do with leftover herbs? | Salsa Verde | Cook Smarts by Jess Dang

Oh, we've all found ourselves in this situation. You chose three recipes this week that called for three different kinds of herbs, so now your fridge has some leftover basil, cilantro, and parsley, all spoiling very soon. So, what does one do when this happens (all too often)? My answer is to chop / blend and make a salsa verde, and then drizzle it on absolutely anything you want. All salsa verde … [Read more...]