Monday, June 23, 2014

Pasta with fresh vegetables and a new addition to our neighborhood

Sunday morning I got up to finish the sourdough bread I started Saturday night.  I was measuring the flour and I happened to look out the window, some movement had caught my eye.

This is what I saw, so I ran to my office and grabbed my telephoto lens.  Then I could see this...

Our neighbors had a robin nest under their window and it looks like at least one of the babies has hatched and grown enough to make an outing.  However, he was small enough to still need snacks on his great quest across the street, to the mother robin was back and forth feeding him.

She did see me in the window and wasn't too happy about it, I didn't want to spook her, so I took a quick couple of pictures and backed off.  I didn't want Jr. here to miss any snacks because Momma was doing the stare-down with me.

It lasted a couple of hours, then the sun hit the backside of the shed and the little bird hopped to the other side of the roof.  I don't know how long he stayed there, but it was a beautiful day for an outing.

It was also a beautiful day for dinner outside.  I made this pasta dish with fresh tomatoes, garlic and spinach.  I used moose Italian sausage, and it would be a great recipe to help me use some of the extra ground beef I have.  The recipe came from an Ellie Krieger cookbook under the vegetarian section, but Dave doesn't think it is dinner without some meat.  You could make it with or with-out.

Pasta with grape tomatoes, spinach and garlic
adapted from Ellie Krieger, Weeknight Wonders

1 lb. Italian sausage or ground meat
4 medium cloves garlic
4 cups grape tomatoes
3 cups lightly packed baby spinach
3/4 pound pasta
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
Parmesan cheese, optional

Put a large pot of water on the stove to boil.  While the water heats, peel and thinly slice the garlic and halve the tomatoes.

Heat a large skillet over medium heat.  Brown the sausage until no pink remains.  Drain any extra fat from the pan.  Add the garlic, stirring frequently, cook until fragrant and softened.  Add the tomatoes to the skillet and cook, stirring once or twice, until the tomatoes are warm and softened but still retain their shape, about 4 minutes.  Coarsely chop the spinach and stir in into the tomatoes.  Remove the skillet from the heat and cover to keep warm until the pasta is ready.  Grate the Parmesan cheese for the top and set aside (if using).
Meanwhile, once the water comes to a boil, add the pasta and cook according to the directions on the package, then drain.  Add the pasta to the skillet along with the salt and pepper and toss to combine.  Serve garnished with the cheese, if desired.
Makes 4 servings

2 years ago:  Friendship Bread and Almond Joy Muffins

June 23, 2014   Sunrise:  2:59 am  Sunset 12:47 am   Temp. H 72/ L 50°F

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