Macadamia nut pancakes, trout, & pesto

Living in Hawaii, mac nuts are pretty easy to come by. I threw some chopped nuts in a standard Joy of Cooking pancake recipe and it turned out pretty amazing.

Tonight my brother, his girlfriend, my sister, and two friends are coming over for dinner. I have some trout (bad, bad, not local!) in the freezer and plenty of basil in the garden so it’s trout with pesto for dinner.

My pesto theory: start with a lot of fresh basil leaves (two giant handfuls). If you don’t have that much basil, sub another herb (like parsley, oregano, thyme, whatever you have). Trust me, you can’t screw this up. This is where I plug gardening. Even if you don’t have a yard, you can still grow potted herbs, and you must, it makes such a difference in cooking. Ok, now throw it in a food processor or blender, add a squeeze of 1/2 a lemon, a palm full of grated “hard” cheese (ex. Parmesan or I have been known to use mozzarella in a pinch), a palm full of nuts (mac nuts, almonds, walnuts, pine nuts, or whatever you have on hand although I’ve never tried peanuts), 4 cloves peeled garlic, salt, pepper, and a good pour of olive oil (1/4 cup). Blend that baby. You will need to add more olive oil to make it smooth. You’ll know you’ve added enough when it’s all blended and moves smoothly. Taste it and add more stuff if you think it lacks anything. So don’t sweat it if you don’t have all the “right” ingredients, get creative and sub with things you do have. Be brave and don’t measure, going with your instincts always produces a better result than a recipe.

I’ll let you know how the trout turns out.

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