The best thing about having a well-stocked pantry and a small herb garden is how I can whip up a great meal in so little time without limiting my options to canned goods and instant noodles with MSG laden seasoning. I made a simple pasta dish, farfalle (bow-tie pasta) with pesto, served it with smoked salmon and cream cheese sandwiches and everything was done in less than 30 minutes. But it’s Sunday! Why didn’t Speedy do the cooking when it’s Dad’s turn to cook day? He’s attending a mid-year conference so he’s couldn’t. He did make up for it though, in advance, by cooking dinner on Thursday evening.
Now, about the farfalle with pesto and the smoked salmon and cream cheese sandwiches… The pesto I made with basil I picked from my garden. I’m not saying you have to have a herb garden. I lived in the city for decades and I know about limited space. No place to plant a herb garden? You can grow herbs in pots, actually, and you can even put them on the window sill to do away with the limited space issue. But if herb gardening isn’t your thing but you like pesto, keeping a jar of good quality store-bought pesto in the fridge is a good strategy too.
This is a meal for four.
For the pasta:
225 g. of farfalle (bow-tie pasta) or any pasta shape you prefer
1/3 c. of pesto (click here for recipe for home made pesto)
grated cheese for garnish
For the sandwiches:
1 whole focaccia (or your favorite bread)
1/4 to 1/3 c. of smoked salmon and cream cheese filling (click here for smoked salmon and cream cheese filling recipe)
Cook the pasta in boiling water.
While the pasta cooks, make the pesto and the smoked salmon and cream cheese filling.
When the pasta is ready, toss with the pesto. Keep warm.
Split the focaccia in half horizontally, spread the bottom half with the smoked salmon and cream cheese filling, cover with the top half and cut into mini-sandwiches about two inches wide by three inches long.
Garnish the pasta with grated cheese and serve with the mini sandwiches.