A retired Vegas Showgirl walks into a bar…….

Basil Plants

I was flipping television channels one night when a certain number on the weekly weather forecast caught my immediate attention.  That number was 32, as in Fahrenheit.
I’ve lived in Vegas for about 11 years now and aside from glancing at the occasional roulette wheel, 32 is a number I don’t often see.  132, certainly.  That is the average temperature of my car’s interior as it bakes in the July sun during a brewhouse lunch shift.  When the desert weather pendulum swings in the opposite way, it is cause for concern.  It concerns me at least.  I own basil plants and tomato plants and the minute the number 32 makes it’s Vegas appearance I am no longer the owner of basil plants and tomato plants. 
If I am lucky enough to be flipping television channels and can be forewarned of the 32 on the weekly weather forecast, I harvest every available leaf and instead become the owner of pesto sauce.  Fortunately this year I am.  I haven’t always been so lucky in the past. 
I’m thinking of taking the pesto one step further to create Pesto Eggplant Lasagna.  It is a twist on Gourmet magazine’s Eggplant Lasagna with Parsley Pesto (November 2003).  Go to epicurious.com for the recipe.  I replace the parsley with basil:  I’ve got tons of the stuff. 
I also have dead tomato plants.
Homemade Pesto
2 cups fresh basil leaves
2 cloves garlic. minced
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup pine nuts
2/3 cup olive oil
Combine first 4 ingredients in a food processor, with motor running pour in olive oil in continuous stream.  Makes 1 1/2 cups.

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