This recipe for zucchini pesto noodles was born last summer when I was doing the Whole 30, and it was the recipe that convinced me that yes, I could actually live life without pasta. Not forever, mind you, but a heaping plate full of tender zucchini noodles tossed with fresh pesto and sweet little cherry tomatoes is a whole lot of summertime deliciousness, and when you are right in the midst of fresh local zucchini and tomato season, it’s the right thing to do. Add to that the fact that it takes about 90 seconds of stove time and I think this recipe gets extra summer supper bonus points. So grab a zucchini – they have us surrounded at this point so that won’t be hard – and let’s make it!
This easy recipe for chicken pesto soup is part of what I like to think of as Soup and Salad Season, otherwise known as the period of time after which I have eaten All The Cookies…more on that below. In the meantime, let me just tell you that this soup is a fragrant mixture of chicken and tomatoes in a light and lovely soup made up of broth, a little milk and a generous amount of pesto. It’s a warm and wonderful reminder of the flavors of summer, but in a soup that is just right for a frosty winter’s night. And to make things even better, it comes together in two shakes, because when we want soup we want it NOW. Especially since we have eaten All The Cookies. Let’s make some!
I have only recently become a fishy person. I have loved shellfish of all kinds all my life, but regular old fish? Not so much. My mama kept telling me if I would just TRY it I would like it, and while so far that has not worked with eggplant, mushrooms, olives or beans of any kind, I gotta hand to it to her on fish, because now I LOVE FISH. And since it took me so dang long to get around to liking seafood, I have many many many recipes I need to figure out so that I get all the fishies that are coming to me. My currently favorite, easy, totally reliable way to cook it? In parchment packages. It’s like getting a fishy present!
That’s right, you heard me. BROCCOLI pesto. Bright and colorful cheesy deliciousness spooned over your favorite pasta, sprinkled with parmesan cheese and loaded with good and good for you green veggies. And it takes all of 20 minutes to put the whole thing together, which makes it not only delicious but super-speedy, which is my absolute favorite combination of things. But let’s get back to the whole broccoli part of the pesto thing for a sec, shall we?
The first pesto of basil season is like the sun coming up in the morning after a long rainy night. Bright and sparkling and fresh, and you can’t believe you lived through the long cold winter with no fresh pesto. And then your cute little basil patch turns into a forest, and you are making pesto on pesto on pesto until your family is begging for mercy. That’s when you need to get creative with the pesto. That’s when you need to make blue cheese pesto pasta.
This is the time of year when I have to exert extreme self-control. Here in the Northeast it has JUST started to consistently be above freezing at night (I know!) and so a couple of weeks ago I planted my annual crop of basil plants. They are bright and cheery and they smell enticingly of, well, basil. But they are still babies, and so I have to wait a couple more weeks before I start picking giant bunches of them to cook with. Luckily, I don’t have to wait for pesto though, because as it turns out, parsley makes an absolutely fantastic pesto. Who knew?? (I did. Read on!)