Dan Pilguy's recipes
Creamy Tomato Basil Tortellini
One 20-ounce package tortellini of your choice (cheese, chicken, sausage, spinach, etc.)
2 tablespoons butter
½ small onion, diced
1 garlic scape (stems from garlic plant), minced
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1¼ cups whole milk
½ cup heavy cream
One 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes, with juice
10 leaves fresh kale and, or spinach
3 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
1 head of broccoli
¾ cup Parmesan cheese, finely shredded
Salt and pepper, to taste
Red chili flakes, to taste
Cook tortellini according to package instructions, and drain. (Reserve ½ cup of pasta water for thinning sauce, if needed)
In a large saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until translucent. Mince the garlic scapes and sauté until fragrant. Add the flour and stir constantly for about one minute. Slowly whisk in the milk and heavy cream until smooth. Continue to stir until the sauce begins to simmer. Add the tomatoes, kale, spinach, basil, and broccoli. Season with salt and pepper. Continue to cook until the sauce has thickened and the kale has wilted. Add the Parmesan cheese and stir until melted.
Remove the sauce from the heat, and toss the cooked and drained tortellini into the sauce. Mix until evenly coated. Thin with reserved pasta water, if desired.
Garnish with additional Parmesan cheese and chili flakes
Eggs in a Nest
2 cups of brown rice
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
½ cup dried tomatoes
2 large carrots, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 large bunch of Swiss chard
Cook rice with four cups water in a covered pot while other ingredients are being prepared.
Sauté onions and garlic in olive oil in a wide skillet until lightly golden.
Add and sauté carrots and tomatoes for a few more minutes, adding just enough water to rehydrate the tomatoes.
Mix with other vegetables and cover pan for a few minutes. Uncover, stir well, then use the back of a spoon to make depressions in the cooked leaves, circling the pan like the numbers on a clock.
Break an egg into each depression, being careful to keep yokes whole. Cover pan with the lid and allow eggs to poach for three to five minutes. Remove from heat and serve over rice.
Original recipe makes serves 4
Garlic Scape Pesto
¼ cup pine nuts
¾ cup coarsely chopped garlic scapes (see note)
Juice and zest of ½ lemon
½ teaspoon salt
A few generous grinds of black pepper
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
¼ cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
In a small, dry pan set over very low heat, lightly toast the pine nuts, stirring or tossing occasionally until just beginning to brown, about 2-3 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool for a few minutes.
Combine the scapes, pine nuts, lemon juice and zest, salt, and pepper in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Pulse about 20 times, until fairly well combined. Pour in the olive oil slowly through the feed tube while the motor is running. When the oil is incorporated, transfer the pesto to a bowl and stir in the grated cheese. If you plan to freeze the pesto, wait to add the cheese until after you've defrosted it.
Pour over pasta, or vegetable of choice. We prefer pairing the pesto with zucchini noodles or Zoodles.
Note: Instead of garlic scapes, use half scapes and half herbs such as basil, or dill
Serves 6 to 8 (makes about 1½ cups of pesto)