Happy Birthday to Me

I hope everyone made it safely to their families this holiday season. I'm on my way to Phoenix right now. I know not everyone celebrates Christmas, so one thing we can all celebrate this holiday season, regardless of religion, (unless you're a Jahovah's Witness that reads my blog - are there any?) is my birthday. Yes, I'm a Christmas baby. And no, I don't get jipped on gifts. My friends and family know better. So, please wish me a happy birthday and enjoy this delicious Kale Pesto pasta that I made for my birthday dinner. 

Merry Christmas!

Kale Pesto Orecchiette
makes 4 servings + 1 container of pesto for the freezer

2 bunches lacinato kale (stems removed, rough chop)
1 yellow onion (diced)
5 cloves garlic (rough chop)
1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
2 tbsp white distilled vinegar
1 cup parmesan cheese (freshly grated)
1/2 lemon (juice)
kosher salt and pepper
2 tbsp olive oil
3/4 cup olive oil
1 box orecchiette pasta
1/2 cup pasta water

This recipe makes about double what you need for pasta. I made the pesto and put half of it in the freezer for a super easy meal down the road.

Heat a large saute pan over medium heat. Add 2 tbsp olive oil, onion, garlic, crushed red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Let cook down for 5 minutes. Add kale and 2 tbsp Dijon mustard. Cover and let steam and cook for 8 minutes, until kale is soft. 

In a food processor, add parmesan cheese, lemon juice, white vinegar, kale mixture, and a dash of salt and pepper. Pulse about 8 times. Now turn on the processor and stream in 3/4 cup olive oil slowly. Taste and adjust salt and pepper as necessary.

Add about half of the pesto, which should be about 1 cup or 2 cups total, to a large serving bowl. Add the other half to a sealable container and pop in the freezer. 

Boil pasta according to the box in salty water. Before draining, add 1/2 cup pasta water to the pesto in the bowl. Drain pasta and add directly to the pesto. Combine with two wooden spoons and serve hot.

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