Christmas in Miami is different.
It’s not cold. (It’s hot and humid.)
Everyone speaks Spanish. Todos hablan español. (As the primary tongue.)
Breakfast and dinner drinks are a tad different. (Plus there are friends from Cuba.)
My (immediate) family isn’t here. (They’re in Michigan.)
Christmas in Miami is different, but that’s okay. Different can be great too.
Different means new traditions, with new people, in a new place, can be just as fun as being at home.
Like going kayaking near multimillion dollar homes, wondering what’s under their Christmas tree.
Taking a long walk through the paths of Mattheson Hammock.
Getting in touch with animals..
… of all kinds.
Enjoying the beauty of the tropics this region brings.
Tallarin verde is kind of like pesto. But better. It’s creamy, refreshing and satisfying all at the same time.
It’s also a pretty simple dish like pesto, def under 30 minutes, the sauce can be ready by the time the pasta is cooked.
Start by sautéing some onion and garlic (a must if cooking Peruvian.)
Toss in some basil.
Next add twice the spinach.
Saute for a minute then remove from heat. Guess what, you’re pretty much done.
Just add some milk, the evaporated kind.
And a good amount of queso fresco. It’s the best!
Get ready and go! I used a hand-held emulsifier because I only have a plastic food processor and blender and don’t like putting hot things in plastic devices. Do as you wish… but if there are holes in your plastic, there is proly plastic in your food… just saying.
Check out that green!
And there you have it. Smooth, verde, Peruvian Christmas sauce.
Traditionally speaking, it’s served with regular pasta and chicken or steak, but I can’t follow too many rules at once so I used whole wheat pasta and made a vegetarian meal of it.
Hope you and your loved ones have a very Merry Christmas!
Ingredients (6-8 servings)
- 1 lb whole wheat pasta
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1-2 garlic cloves, minced
- 3-4 ounces basil
- 7-8 ounces spinach leaves
- 1 Tbsp walnuts, chopped
- 6 ounces evaporated milk
- 5-6 ounces queso fresco, crumbled
- 1/4 tsp sea salt, plus more to taste
Bring a pot of water to boil. Meanwhile, saute the onion and garlic in the oil until translucent. When the water is ready, add the pasta and cook according to instructions.
Add the basil, saute for 1 minute, next add the spinach and saute for another minute or so. Be sure not to over cook or saute on too high of heat, brown greens aren’t pretty.
Remove from heat, transfer to food processor, blender or use a hand emulsifier to puree.
Before blending, add the milk, queso, nuts and salt. Blend/emulsify until smooth.
When the pasta is ready, drain, and reserve a cup or so of the pasta water.
Combine the drained pasta and green sauce. Add the cooking liquid as needed to thin out the sauce.