Pesto is one of those timeless ingredients that everyone knows and most people love. However, variety is the spice of life and a little change to the basic recipe for pesto could do us all a little good. Indeed, though rocket is, like basil, green and incredibly adaptable, it has its own very distinctive qualities. For instance, unlike basil, rocket has a very peppery, almost spicy, taste which gives this pesto a rather unexpected kick. In reality I’m rather loath to call this creation pesto, since its character is vastly different from what people usually assume the term to mean. If it wasn’t for the fact that the process was almost identical a more apt term for this devilish creation would surely have been tapenade. In my mind, tapenade evokes thoughts of a much stronger flavour profile than does pesto.

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During the last few months, I believe FrugalFeeding has undergone a reasonably subtle change of direction. If asked for a synonym of the word ‘frugal’, I believe most people would, somewhat wrongly, pluck the word ‘cheap’ from their vocabulary. However, the word frugal is slightly more nuanced than its usual usage might suggest. As the tagline for this blog might suggest, a rather more suitable synonym would be ‘economical’. I believe this recipe encapsulates my slight change in thinking really rather well. Olive tapenade is unlikely to win any awards for being the cheapest, or most necessary, culinary creation. However, this recipe provides an economical solution to one’s desire to indulge in this rather punchy side-dish. If bought at a supermarket, tapenade bears a rather exorbitant price. A price which no man, or indeed woman, in their right mind would be happy to pay. Make tapenade at home, however, and one’s monetary misdemeanour is lessened somewhat. This means that although money has been spent on something which isn’t necessarily necessary, the refusal to buy sub-par and overpriced tapenade has resulted in sound economic policy. Congratulations, you are now on your way to becoming Chancellor of the Exchequer – a position which is perhaps less esteemed than it was in the days of Gladstone.

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Pappardelle appears to be ‘pasta of the month’, the internet is awash with it and one can see why. Its appearance is so warm and comforting – perfect for pairing with a rich, buttery sauce. Indeed, the name Pappardelle is a derivation of the Italian verb ‘pappare’, which means to gobble. This is, in my opinion, incredibly apt considering winter pasta dishes of this variety are intended to be rather homely and comforting. Perhaps this yearning for comfort food is one of the reasons I’m very close to being addicted to mushrooms.

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Bulgur Salad

I discovered a recipe a while ago, though I can’t remember from where, for a really simple bulgur wheat salad. The perfect opportunity to make it arose today when I realised I hadn’t soaked my split peas, with which I had intended to make a chana dahl. This dish really is incredibly simple, delicious, healthy and quick. It also contains bulgur wheat which is, at the moment, one of my favourite foods. Bulgur wheat is filling, healthy and very versatile, not to mention the fact it has a much better taste than couscous, its man-made equivalent.

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