pesto

PESTO, BALSAMIC & PEACH PIZZA W/ GARLIC-CASHEW CREAM (GLUTEN FREE) by Lindsey | Dolly and Oatmeal


we welcomed our little baby joey on august 15th. we couldn’t be more in love and smitten with him. even amesy is tolerating his cries, and endless diaper changes. he’s even been pretty good at sharing me with his baby brother. i plan to share a bit more about joey’s birth story. but needless to say, it’s been a wonderful, chaotic whirlwind. so, stay tuned!

let’s talk pizza. specifically this peach-y garlicky pizza that we’ve been making all summer long! this combination of ingredients was somewhat of a hodgepodge of things leftover in our fridge one saturday night/a medley of ingredients we frequently combine for salads and such. the first thing you need is a ripe juicy peach. i’ve tried this with a semi-ripe, not-too-sweet peach, and while tasty, it didn’t hit the right note (the sweet, juiciness is key here). but since it’s the height of peach season just about everywhere in the states, i doubt you’ll have trouble finding one. next, you need some really good aged balsamic. the watery grocery store variety probably won’t cut it in terms of the sweet, acidic drizzle we’re going for here. and lastly, a good pesto. if i’m not making my own, then a store bought version is just as good. for cheese, i go between a buffalo milk fresh mozzarella, or a vegan mozzarella that are both wonderful here (of course depending on your diet). and for the pizza crust, i always use my recipe for the best gluten free pizza dough, or, if i’ve run out, i use this frozen dough that is quite good as a backup.

this is our go-to friday night summer pizza pie and i only thought it my duty to share its deliciousness here with you before we say goodbye to summer vacation. i hope you get the chance to make it! happy end of august!

xoxo!



PESTO, BALSAMIC & PEACH PIZZA W/ GARLIC-CASHEW CREAM (GLUTEN FREE)

garlic-cashew cream | makes roughly 1 1/2 cups

  • 2 small heads garlic

  • 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons olive oil

  • 1 cup raw cashews, soaker for at 5 least 5 hours or overnight, drained and rinsed

  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk

  • 2-3 teaspoons apple cider vinegar

  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard

  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder

  • salt & pepper

pizza | makes 1 pie/8slices

  • 1 portion of this pizza dough (or pizza dough of choice, roughly 1/2 pound)

  • 1/4-1/3 cup garlic-cashew cream (recipe above)

  • 1 ripe peach, sliced

  • 6-8 ounces mozzarella (if using fresh mozzarella about 2-3 small balls)

  • 2 tablespoons pesto, homemade or store bought

  • 1 cup baby arugula

  • extra virgin olive oil

  • 2 teaspoons aged balsamic vinegar

  • flaky sea salt

  • freshly ground pepper



method

  1. make the garlic-cashew cream. preheat oven to 400°F. cut the tops of the garlic heads to expose cloves of garlic. place the garlic heads in foil and drizzle over the 2 teaspoons olive oil. fold up the foil to make a loose packet, and place in the oven. cook until knife tender, about 30-40 minutes. let cool.

  2. in the container of an upright (preferably high-speed) blender, combine the cashews, roasted garlic cloves, almond milk, 1 tablespoons olive oil, 2 teaspoons vinegar, dijon, onion powder, a few fat pinches salt, and a couple grinds of pepper. blend on high, stopping to scrape down the sides as needed, until the garlic-cashew cream is smooth. taste and adjust, adding more vinegar, salt, and/or pepper if needed. use right away, or store in a resealable container in the fridge (garlic-cashew cream can stay in the fridge for up 1 week.)

  3. make the pizza. place a pizza stone in your oven, and preheat to 500°F.

  4. cut a large piece of parchment paper and place it on your countertop. place the dough in the center, and sprinkle with some brown rice flour. starting from the center, use your fingertips to spread the dough out into a large 10-11-inch circle or oval (the edges may crack a bit, and that's ok, just pinch the dough back together). use your dishtowel, and place it on top of the dough, letting it rise again, for roughly 30 minutes.

  5. trim the parchment paper below your pizza dough, and discard. (if there's too much overhang it can quickly burn, we just need enough for the dough to sit on.)

  6. use a pizza peel (or cookie sheet) to carefully slide your pizza dough (along with its' parchment) onto the pizza stone. par-bake the dough for 6-7 minutes. remove from oven, and use a spoon to spread the garlic cream evenly over top. then evenly spread the peaches over the garlic cream. place in the oven and bake for 5-6 minutes, until peaches have softened. add your cheese of choice, then add dollops of pesto. bake one last time, until cheese is melted and crust is crisp, about 6-8 minutes. remove from oven and top with arugula. drizzle with olive oil, the balsamic vinegar; sprinkle some flaky sea salt, and fresh pepper over top.

  7. slice, and serve hot.


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ZA'ATAR PESTO by Lindsey | Dolly and Oatmeal


hey! i’m popping in real quick to share yet another sunday meal prep sauce. this one’s for a wonderful twist on traditional pesto where we essentially replace the basil with parsley and za’atar spice. if you’re not familiar with za’atar it’s a spice blend traditionally made from dried marjoram, thyme and/or oregano, toasted sesame seeds, dried sumac, and sometimes salt. it’s generally used as a rub on meats, sprinkled on fish or poultry, added to roasted veggies, mixed with oil to top bread, etc.!

today we’re mixing za’atar spice/seasoning into a herby/nutty/garlicky base of parsley, toasted pine nuts, fresh garlic, and olive oil. it’s one of my favorite ways to utilize za’atar and it makes for such a bright and light summer sauce. i first had a similar pesto at a restaurant in the west village. it was one of mine and frank’s last meals out before we became parents to amesy. but the restaurant has since closed, and we’ve moved almost 3,000 miles away, so the need to make my own version of what i remember that pest to taste like has been somewhat essential. and i thought i ought to share this recipe here with you because it’s that good!

before i leave with the recipe, here are a few ways to use this sauce to spice up your food/life throughout the week:

  • forever and always on this leaf-less salad. the pesto acts just like a salad dressing here, and all you may need is a bit more salt and you’re good to go!

  • swirled into this flatbread (literally one of the most delicious things to use it for. just replace the first 5 ingredients with a few dollops of the za’atar pesto).

  • use as a marinade for veggie, chicken, or even fish (i love salmon here) kebabs.

  • mixed into roasted veggies.

  • mixed into potato salad or roasted potatoes

  • on flatbread, pizza, or pasta!

happy sunday, friends! xo



za’atar pesto | v

| makes just under 1 cup |

print the recipe

method

  1. in the cup of a food processor fitted with a metal “s” blade, combine the parsley, pine nuts, lemon juice, garlic, a few pinches salt, and a couple cracks of pepper. while the food processor is running, drizzle in the 1/2 cup of olive oil and blend until everything is broken down and sufficiently mixed together, stopping a couple times to scrape down the sides of the container. taste and add more salt, pepper, or lemon juice, if needed.

  2. scrape the parsley and olive oil mixture into a bowl. stir in the za’atar spice until combined. taste and adjust any seasonings, if necessary. scrape the za’atar pesto into a lidded jar. pour over the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil to prevent the pesto from browning in the fridge.

  3. za’atar pesto can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 weeks. let pesto stand at room temp roughly 30 minutes before using.

ingredients

  • 1 cup fresh parsley

  • 3 tablespoons toasted pine nuts

  • juice from 1/2 small lemon

  • 1 clove garlic, roughly chopped

  • salt & freshly ground pepper

  • 1/2 cup, plus 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil to top

  • 1/4 cup za’atar spice


Athena's Creamy Cauliflower Soup W/ Dukkah & Watercress Pesto by Lindsey | Dolly and Oatmeal


i wasn't always very keen on cooking.  the truth is, that until i met frank, and he and i started dating, i didn't really enjoy the process of cooking that much.  but as our relationship progressed, the notion of cooking for someone else and pleasing their tummy and tastebuds really appealed to me.   so much so, that while frank and i grew a relationship and fell in love with each other, i simultaneously cultivated a little love affair with cooking as well.  

before we moved in together, we would take turns cooking at our respective apartments.  he would generally "cook" sandwiches, which were seriously good.  and i would plan some sort of intricate dinner like a ricotta gnocchi recipe that i had ripped from the pages of the new york times. but saturday and sunday mornings were reserved for getting up a bit early to make a batch of scones or muffins that i had bookmarked and printed out weeks before.  i would scotch tape the recipes to the my kitchen cabinets where they would become one with my little kitchen - splatters, drips, and all! maybe you would have guessed, but as mine and frank's connection grew stronger so did my love for preparing our meals.

cooking and developing recipes for a living has its considerable perks, but the past year that drive has waned a bit with having a baby.  and i have often felt that love and connection to food disipate. i've talked to some other moms about this, and i know it's not just me.  but that continual tug in two completely different directions of wanting to the best, most present mama, while also striving to be the best at your career has taken its toll. which is why every time a new cookbook shows up on my doorstep i am eternally grateful for the wonderful authors who share their stories, hearts, and kitchens with us every time fall and spring roll around.

so, today i'm cooking from a new book, cook beautiful, by athena colderone of the blog, eyeswoon. the recipes are organized by the seasons of the year, so i flipped right to the fall chapter and gathered a load of east coast autumn inspiration.  i chose to make this creamy cauliflower soup to really welcome fall into my kitchen (although, it's literally 90 degrees in LA as i'm writing this), and give you all some chilly-weather meal inspiration as well.  this cauliflower soup is a wonderfully delicious blank canvas - and you could certainly serve and eat this as is.  but athena paired it beautifully with a pistachio dukkah (a middle eastern spice and nut/seed blend), and a zesty watercress-pistachio pesto.  the dukkah added a flavorful crunch, while the pesto added a perfect bit of brightness to make an unassuming soup really shine.   just like the title, states this book is beautiful in every way.  i could see my younger self being too intimidated to cook from it just from its shear beauty, but i think it really beckons you to cook your most beautiful, push your boundaries a bit by introducing you to new ideas, and different ways of preparing a typical meal.   

big cozy hugs! xo



creamy cauliflower soup w/ dukkah & watercress pesto 

recipe from Cook Beautiful by Athena Calderone

*my notes: athena's recipe calls for heavy cream. if you don't handle dairy well, like me, then you can replace it with 1/4 cup tahini which i added to the blender during step 5.

| serves 4 |

  • 1 large head of cauliflower (about 2 pounds/910 g), cored and cut into bite-size florets
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
  • kosher salt
  • 2 leeks, white and light green parts only, cut  in half lengthwise and rinsed clean
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 8 ounces (225 g) yukon gold potatoes (about 3), peeled and quartered
  • 3 cups (720 ml) chicken stock
  • 2/3 cup (185 ml) heavy cream
  • 2 lemons, zested and juiced
  • freshly cracked pepper
  • watercress pistachio pesto, for serving
  • dukkah, for serving

watercress pistachio pesto | makes 2 cups

  • 1/3 cup (45 g) unslated pistachios, toasted, plus more for garnish
  • 1 1/2 cups (60 g) packed watercress
  • 3/4 cup (45 g) packed fresh parsely
  • 2/3 cup (165 ml) extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup (75 ml) lemon juice (about 2 lemons)
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • kosher salt

dukkah | makes 3/4 cup

  • 3/4 cup (95 g) unsalted pistachios
  • 1/4 cup (40 g) sesame seeds
  • 2 tablespoons coriander seeds
  • 2 tablespoons cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt


method

soup

  1. preheat oven to 425°F (220°C)
  2. spread the cauliflower florets on a baking sheet.  drizzle the generously with oil, season with salt, and toss to coat.  roast for 15 minutes, tossing the cauliflower halfway through.  continue to roast until golden brown, about 15 minutes.
  3. while the cauliflower is roasting, chop the leeks crosswise into roughly 1/4-inch (6-mm) slices.  in a medium saucepan, heat the oil and thyme over medium heat and saute the leeks until they are slightly softened, about 2 minutes.  add the garlic and cook until soft and fragrant, about 2 minutes more. 
  4. add the potatoes, stock, cream, 2 cups (480 ml) water, and the roasted cauliflower to the pot.  bring the mixture to a gentle simmer over medium-low heat and cover, cooking until the potatoes are fork-tender, 15 to 20 minutes.  once the potatoes are tender, remove the thyme stems from the mixture (the leaves should have fallen off during cooking).
  5. transfer the mixture to a blender and cover the hole of the blender top with a towel.  blend until the mixture is very smooth.  stir in the lemon juice and season with 2 teaspoons salt and some pepper.  divide the soup among four bowls and top it with lemon zest, a swirl of the watercress pesto, and a sprinkle of dukkah.

pesto

  1. in a food processor, pulse the pistachios, watercress, and parsley until coarsely chopped, about 10 pulses.  add the oil and lemon juice and process until a smooth, loose paste forms, about three 10-second pulses.  transfer the mixture to a bowl, stir in the melon zest, and season with salt.  covered in the refrigerator, with a layer of olive oil on top, the pesto will last 3 to 4 days.

dukkah

  1. in a small skillet over medium-high heat, toast the pistachios for minutes, until warm.  add the sesame seeds, coriander seeds, and cumin seeds.  continue to toast for 2 to 4 minutes, or until the seeds are fragrant. transfer the mixture to a mini food processor, along with the peppercorns and salt.  pulse until the pistachios are coarsely chopped  the dukkah can be used immediately or stored in an airtight container in a cool place for up to 1 week.

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