Salsa di Parmigiano

Blythe has a wonderful nanny who cares for her during the day while we are at work.  In addition being amazing with our little one and taking her on all sorts of adventures, she cooks delicious-sounding meals and brings leftovers for lunch that make me wish we could swap lunches.  I doubt she'd trade hers for what I usually pack... 

Recently she made us these Cauliflower Rice Stuffed Zucchini with Shrimp that I never would have made on my own, which were flavorful and unusual, and she introduced me to my newest obsession: vegetable noodles.  

I am now the proud owner of a spiralizer.  I try to avoid purchasing kitchen gadgets that are single use, but I've made an exception for the spiralizer because it makes these long, curly noodles that are fun to eat and cook and healthy.  An added bonus is that Blythe loves them and they are the perfect shape for her to grasp in her little hands.  These noodles actually make me think I like zucchini and I now regret not planting some in our garden. 

Yellow squash or zucchini noodles alone have very little flavor, which makes them the ideal vehicle for whatever kind of sauce you favor.  Usually my go-to sauce in the summer is pesto (made with pine nuts or walnuts), but lately I've been making Salsa di Parmigiano and adding a generous dollop of the Salsa di Parmigiano on the noodles.  It is deliciously cheesy with a kick from the red pepper flakes and I love to double this recipe and keep a Mason jar of the salsa in the refrigerator to put on vegetables (spiralized or not), pasta, or bread.  With the bountiful late-summer produce, this is the perfect sauce to have on-hand.

Salsa di Parmigiano
Recipe from Michael Chiarello via Alexandra Cooks

Ingredients
1/2 pound Parmesan
1/2 pound Asiago cheese
2 to 3 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons chopped scallions
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (I used 2, but start with 1)
1 to 1 1/2 cups extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Preparation
1. Remove any rind from the cheeses and chop the cheeses into rough 1-inch chunks. Pulse the cheeses and garlic in a food processor until reduced to a fine, pea-sized gravel. Transfer this mixture to a bowl and stir in the scallions.

2. Add the oregano, rubbing it between your fingers over the bowl, red pepper flakes, 1 cup of the olive oil and black pepper. Stir. If mixture seems dry, add more olive oil by the 1/4 cup. Cover and let stand at room temperature for at least 4 hours before using.

Random aside - I've been getting emails from The Kitchn Cure, which just started last week.  For 20 days, they send a daily tip for cleaning and organizing your kitchen.  Today's task is cleaning the oven and last week was cleaning out the refrigerator and freezer (all of which are tasks I needed to tackle).

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