Kismat and I have wanted to take his parents (who never travel anywhere) to Yosemite for the last few years. It took some convincing, but we finally got them to agree to come with us. In the 30+ years that they’ve lived in California, they’ve never been north of Lancaster. They’re originally from India, and we’re always hearing stories of how beautiful it is in Kashmir and other regions in and around India. Now that they’re retired, we wanted to show them that there are beautiful places in their current home too. Yosemite seemed like a natural place to start this discovery.
Our trip started out a little late on Thursday because I had this nagging unexplained pain in my left calf. I decided it would be smart to go to urgent care before we left, just to make sure it wasn’t anything serious. They did an ultrasound to make sure it wasn’t a blood clot, and when that came back negative, they said it was probably tendonitis or shin splints. The thing is, I’ve been pretty sedentary for the last few weeks, so that explanation doesn’t make much sense to me. Anyway, I had some peace of mind and we went on our way and made it to Yosemite.
On Friday, we explored the valley, taking short walking trips to see the sights. By the middle of the day though, I could barely walk! We made our way back to our cabin and sat around for the evening.
Saturday morning everyone went out for a hike to a local waterfall, while I stayed back to baby my leg. By the afternoon, a storm came in, and I was secretly thankful because it gave me a valid excuse for staying in. We did a 600 piece puzzle, played games, and made this Sun Dried Tomato Pesto Pasta. I had made the pesto in my food processor at home, so it was a cinch to throw together.
I’m disappointed that we didn’t get to do more exploring because of me, but I’m happy that we at least got to go. It was a fun trip, and it was great to have some quality family time. I think they were even impressed.
Pasta with Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto, Olives, and Spinach
YieldAbout 6 servings
Prep Time / Cook Time/
Activity GuideBike Touring, Car Camping
- 3/4 cup pine nuts or walnuts
- 3/4 cup oil-packed sun dried tomatoes, drained
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 4 cups, reserving 1/3 cup for the sauce
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 pound bow tie pasta
- 10 ounces spinach
- 12 ounce jar kalamata olives
- Cutting board
- Food processor or blender
- Large pot
- Make the pesto at home, by combining nuts, sun dried tomatoes, olive oil, and water in a food processor. Season with a few good sized pinches of salt and some pepper. Taste and add more salt if needed. Transfer to a leak-proof jar or tupperware.
- Cook the pasta according to package instructions. Meanwhile, half the olives and roughly chop the spinach.
- When the pasta is cooked, drain it and return it to the pot. Stir in the pesto, olives and spinach, heating it for just a minute or two, until hot.