Homemade pasta and homemade pesto, fast food? Is she smoking sandalwood, damn hippy homesteader? Obviously has too much time to poke around in gardens and lacto ferment pickles and handmake every last piece of family clothing including handstitched underwear?
Actually no. I don't have pots of time. But I do poke around in gardens and I'm playing with lacto fermentation while shouting at my sourdough starter and hoping that one day I might get back to my sewing machine. (If I can find it, I think it's under the twenty piles of unfolded washing dumped in the corner on their way off the line and into cupboards. In my dreams.)
But for a fast dinner, you can make pasta from scratch.
Start with the sauce. Any rocket on hand? My Mum grows wild rocket, and it really is wild. Grows like mental. I've usually got a few nuts on hand (edible as opposed to immediate family members, also handy), and if you happen to have a scraping of parmesan, a bit of lemon left over from tea, garlic and some olive oil, you're all good. It's ideal to not have to shop for this meal.
I don't have a recipe for my pesto. I will formulate one some day and re-blog it here when I do. But it's pretty much a couple of big handfuls of greens, this time it was rocket, some toasted nuts, this time pine nuts, some lemon juice, minced garlic and salt and a good stream of olive oil. Whiz up. Lovely. Taste it. You're done.
I use Jamie Oliver's principle which I must have watched him make on a show about ten years ago: 100gms strong flour plus one egg per person. The recipe is here.
Engage child labour only if you have an extra ten minutes. Do not be deceived by willingness and enthusiasm. Small hands will slow you down and frustrate the bejaysus out of you if you're in a hurry.
And the extra mess.
I rolled this out with a borrowed pasta maker (mine is in storage) and sliced it nice and thick with a knife.
It cooks in boiling water for 2-3 minutes and that's not some mad make-it-from-scratch lunatic exaggeration. 2-3 minutes. If you can mix up flour and eggs and get it rolled out quick smart, you've got fresh pasta in the same time it took to open a bag and boil it for 12 minutes. And it's not only tastier, and you wear that earnest glow of someone who just cooked pasta from scratch dammit, it's much more nutritious. The fresher the flour the better, ideally unbleached, that's some good carbohydrate.
Fast food. And you didn't have to drive to get it, no animal lived in misery to supply it and no kid worked for some compromised multinational to serve it. It'll fill them up and hopefully someone else will clean up the kitchen.
Particularly if you had a Tilly helping at all.