Happy Friday!! Hope you all have lovely weekends lined up. B and I are heading to our friends' cottage in the Ottawa valley. We're looking forward to some waterskiing, tubing, golf (him) and reading (me), catching up with friends we don't see nearly enough and general merriment. We're also anxious to find out if our volleyball team managed to maintain our top-4 spot and make it into the playoffs next week. Cross your fingers!
This is an easy weeknight meal. Cook a small package of penne according to package directions until al dente. While pasta is cooking, wash and cut 1 small eggplant into slices 1/2" thick and quarter 1 red or orange pepper. Brush both vegetables with olive oil, and broil or grill until the eggplant browns, turning once. To loosen the skin on the pepper once it's cooked, place it in a sealed ziploc bag for several minutes. Remove skin.
Toast a handful of pine nuts over med-high heat in a dry pan on the stove, shaking occasionally until they start to brown (watch the pan carefully or they will burn). Drain the pasta and add grilled vegetables and pine nuts. While still warm, add store-bought pesto to taste, some grated Parmesan and chopped basil.
Make a big batch of homemade pesto by following and doubling a recipe such as this one. Pour prepared pesto into an ice cube tray and freeze. Store frozen pesto cubes in a Ziploc bag for future use.
Add grilled portobello mushrooms.
Add grilled zucchini.
Add sun-dried tomatoes.
Add chicken or shrimp.