#FoodieFriday – (Sorta) Jalapeño Popper Pasta

Earlier this week I made blackened swai with a mango salsa. These three mangos have been sitting in our fridge for a couple of weeks, and I needed a way to use at least one. Ding – Mango Salsa! Except I didn’t have any jalapeño. “Luckily” for me, Daisy needed treats, which led to a trip to that black-hole of a store where you can’t help but spend more time and money than you could ever have expected Target. The great thing about Target is that you always find things you don’t need. Like a HUGE bag of jalapeños.

photoClearly I couldn’t turn this down, especially since it was less than $2, even though I only needed half of ONE pepper for my salsa :)

I digress. The mango salsa was not the point of this post, although it was tasty. The point was to write about my Wednesday night creation, (sorta) jalapeño popper pasta. I needed an outlet for all those peppers so that they did not go to waste; hence I scoured the interwebs for inspiration and came up with what follows.

First I halved and cored my lovely green monsters. I call them monsters because I could barely breathe throughout this entire step of the process. I think Dave was ready to call in medical assistance!



Then I placed the peppers face down on a cookie sheet and baked at 450 for a while – precise, I know. Once they browned a bit, I flipped them over to roast a bit longer.



While the peppers were heating up, I mixed a cup of almond milk, a cup of nonfat Greek yogurt and two cups of veggie cheese (normally this would read heavy cream, cream cheese and shredded cheese, but I was thinking about our waistlines) in a saucepan to warm on the stove. Later I realized this was not working because veggie cheese doesn’t really like to melt, so I had to get the blended involved. More details to come.


With the peppers toasted to perfection, I put them in a food processor with a bit of olive oil and a heap of minced garlic. My dad has had this same jar (no, not this same exact jar, but many many jars of the same product) on hand for as long as I can remember, and I simply can’t imagine cooking without it.



At this point I decided to put everything in the blender – the pepper blend and the creamy almond-milk-yogurt-veggie-cheese mixture. It smoothed everything together nicely, and I poured the cheesy jalapeño sauce back into the pot, adding salt, pepper and cumin. At some point in the process I began the pasta-water boiling process and cooked some rotini noodles. Once all was fully cooked and warm, I drained the water and covered the pasta in the “popper” sauce! The pasta was served with a side salad and wine, of course :)



What were some of the best meals you had this week?
Which was your favorite?


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As of today April is halfway over, and I have yet to post! Sorry… it’s been quite busy, so I will catch you up through my #instaphotos.

My dear friend from college, Madison, came for a weekend visit and brought beautiful weather. We met up with some friends for a going away party Friday night, and then later met Dave for dinner at Cava – one of my favorite restaurants.

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meet and greet. @presenza #latergram #TGIF

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We spent the next day touring the Newseum. I’ve been there for a couple of events, but never spent time in the exhibits and it was fascinating. My cousin “Pretty Boy Floyd” had his gun on display in the FBI exhibit. Madison and I pretended that we were separated by the Berlin wall.

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Saturday evening we attended “Drink the District,” which was a great excuse to drink a lot of wine – who doesn’t love that!?

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rosé. making a #comeback #winetime

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#drinkthedistrict with @presenza #latergram

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Sunday we strolled along the Tidal Basin to see Cherry Blossoms and the memorials that line the water. It was my first time at the recently opened Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial. I was moved by his quotes etched in the surrounding walls, much like at the FDR Memorial.

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This past Friday night, Dave and I had a date night at my favorite wine bar in the area. They are reasonably priced, and have really high quality wines, not to mention the best sandwich ever – the Buffaloaf. I love Screwtop Wine Bar!

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Back at my fave #winebar with my fave guy.

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Saturday was beautiful! And Dave needed a distraction from studying, so we went on a bike ride. DC has a great bike rental service called Capital Bikeshare, and this past Saturday broke the record for bikes rented – 11,368! I feel so proud to be part of setting that record! After our ride, we treated ourselves to wine, beer and cheese at Northside Social. (I ate most all of the cheese!)

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Cheese! Yum. #dcspring

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Yesterday morning I treated my roommate Crystal to a belated birthday brunch at The Chesapeake Room. I had french toast and it was delicious! Immediately following brunch, I proceeded to nap on the couch!

For over a year, Dave has been studying and taking lessons for his instrument flight rating exam with the FAA. He took the exam yesterday and passed with flying colors, no pun intended! Last night we obviously had to celebrate with Mexican food, so chose the nearby Uncle Julio’s :)