I’ve been attempting to buff out my 30 minute and under dinner repertoire. It’s one of the lynch pins in my pledge to cook at home more. This dinner strategy came together while I was swimming laps. Somewhere around meter 500 I usually find a zen. This, of course, always reminds me of Goldie Hawn in The First Wives’ Club, “I have some of my best ideas while working out!” I felt such a strange affinity for that movie considering I was 10 when it was released. Diane Keaton has owned my heart from the beginning. You guys understand, right? Good. I knew you were my people.
Speaking of my people, my Trader Joe’s only carried precooked sausages for years and it drove me batty. Now that they are stocking fresh ones I see it as my personal responsibility to buy them as often as possible. We all carry our crosses differently. The success of this meal requires you to maximize on the cooking times of each component of the dish. We’ll prep the sausages and tomatoes, stick them in the oven, start the rice, and then make the pesto while the rice and sausages do their separate things. You got this.
Roasted Sausages and Tomatoes with Pesto Serves 4-5
One package uncooked sausage (pick your favorite flavor)
12 oz cherry tomatoes
1 cup uncooked white rice (cooked to package instructions)
1/2 cup raw walnuts
Large handful basil leaves
1/4 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Coat the cherry tomatoes and sausages with olive oil and arrange on a baking sheet. Season with salt and pepper and roast in the oven until sausages are cooked and the tomatoes have burst, about 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, cook the rice (or another starch of your preference) according to package instructions. When done, fluff, season with salt as needed, and set aside.
While the rice cooks, combine the walnuts and basil leaves in a blender or food processor. Begin blending on low until the nuts are in small pieces. Drizzle in olive oil while the blender is on low. The mixture will begin to come together and form a bright green sauce.
Plate the sausage and tomato mixture with the rice and top with pesto. Any leftover pesto can be refrigerated for up to five days. Cover sauce with plastic wrap to keep it from turning brown.