Recipes for when it's springtime, let's blow up our lives
JK guys. Only if you want to. And only if it's the good kind of blow up, you know?
If you’re anywhere in the eastern half of the United States, it is my pleasure to welcome you to spring (actually, summer…this weather is nuts). Yes, springtime! Sunshine! Asparagus! Changes!
I’m in the midst of a job transition and that feels right on brand for spring, just like pasta primavera. It’s been a wild few weeks; I’ve been at my current job for most of my adult life, and this change was not expected and still doesn’t feel like real life. The new job is one of those “wait, what? Me?” opportunities that are impossible to see coming and make you re-think everything you thought about your professional future—in a good way, of course.
I talk a lot about jobs and my professional life (my friend Maria and I are about to release season two of our podcast, What’s a Job), and one thing that always strikes me is how freakin’ powerful a job change can be. It can be more money, sure, but it also makes us see ourselves through an entirely different lens that permeates all parts of our lives.
When someone who doesn’t know you from Eve takes a bet on you and believes you can accomplish crazy things, it’s impossible to not let that give you a little pep in your step. I’ve been waking up ready to kick ass and take names this month, just in time for my spring gardens to demand attention.
If you’re trying to balance the importance of professional loyalty and commitment with the urge to make a change, I’m thinking about you this week. It’s a weird spot to be in and even though we all go through it, it can feel really isolating. You got this. And if you need an outlet, hit reply or take a page out of my book and go plant your spring herb garden. You’ll want it for this week’s recipes.
Have a lovely Saturday, chefs!
Lamb meatballs with punchy pesto
Here’s the thing, I don’t really think I know what punchy means, but my heart tells me this applies here. I made these for my friend Leah this week and she threatened to drink the sauce, so that’s an endorsement if I’ve ever heard one.
Preheat your oven to 425.
In a large mixing bowl, combine 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs, 1/4 cup milk, an egg, a big spoonful of minced garlic, salt and pepper. Then add 1lb of ground lamb and mix well.
With wet hands, roll out your meatballs onto a greased baking pan. Bake for 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, make your pesto: in a small blender or food processor, combine a huge handful of herbs (I like basil, parsley, dill, and mint) a good drizzle of olive oil (I used 1/4 cup), the juice of one lemon, and a few cloves of garlic. Blend well.
Serve the meatballs on top of a spoonful or two of pesto. I made them with crispy potatoes and some braised greens.
Could you get a better primavera at your local Olive Garden? Maybe, but this one is relatively healthy, easy, probably not at all traditional, and feels like springtime. Also comes together in about 20 minutes.
Chop up your vegetables and separate:
In a frying pan: 1 head of asparagus, lots of green onions
Set aside to add to your pasta later; 1/4 head broccoli, a small bag of fresh shelled peas
Boil a pound of your favorite pasta and set a timer for 2 minutes before al dente - so about 8 minutes. When the timer goes off, add your broccoli and peas and cook for another 2 minutes. Drain it all together and put it back in the pot.
Meanwhile, prep your asparagus and green onions: saute with some olive oil, salt and pepper until nice and soft. Turn off heat and add some minced garlic and red pepper flakes. Add it to the pot with your pasta.
Make your sauce: combine 2 individual containers of plain greek yogurt, some salt and pepper, lemon zest, the juice of one lemon, and a bunch of parm cheese. Add the sauce to your pasta and veggies and mix well.
We had this with grilled chicken, which I marinated in a bit of the yogurt sauce. 10/10.
Still here? Want to be here every Saturday morning? You know what to do: