Asparagus-Spinach Pesto Pasta with Blackened Shrimp

I probably should have poured a nice stiff drink recipe for you all on this loveliest of lovely tax days. Especially for my fellow small business owners who just gave half of their revenue back to the government. Good grief, I won’t even go there.

Instead though, I thought I’d offer my idea of a more comforting alternative.

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Shrimp, Avocado and Roasted Corn Salad

Any of you Instagram followers will know that I had the pleasure of spending last week in Iowa with a bunch of stellar farmers and bloggers learning all about…CORN! Lots and lots and lots of corn! It was a fabulous experience (which I will be telling you about soon in another post!). But ever since then, I have been craving this salad I adore from one of my favorite local KC restaurants, Urban Table, that it sprinkled with the most delicious roasted corn. They call it the “Shrimp Buena Terra Salad”. I call it…one of my favorite salads EVER.

Seriously. I know that food bloggers are supposed to be all adventurous and everything, but this salad was the first dish I ever ordered there and I love it so much that I may have ordered it every time since. SO GOOD. So after a year, I finally decided I should try making it at home. And I must say, my little homemade rendition seemed to be pretty spot on!

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White Bean, Spinach & Pesto Soup

Here it is, friends — the best 8-minute soup I’ve ever made! :)

Made this for the first time a few weeks ago on a night when I was randomly craving soup (yes, in the middle of July!). I happened to be in a hurry that evening, but was craving something different from my usual go-to favorite for a quick soup dinner. So since I always make it a point to have pesto in my freezer (always freeze multiple batches each summer!), I decided to experiment with a recipe I vaguely remembered having seen online for pesto white bean soup. Began with simple chicken broth, beans and pesto. Then also tossed in some fresh spinach I had in the fridge, some extra fresh Parmesan, and voila!

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Presto Pesto Panini (with Prosciutto, Provolone & Peppers)

So apparently my love for alliteration translates to food as well. :)

This is one of my favorite quick lunches to make. Granted, I’ve never been a big “sandwich” person. (May have been the only kid who grew up not crazy about PB&Js!) But I have been known to get excited about a nicely-grilled panini. So when I came across this lovely ciabatta roll this week, thought it was a good time to pull out the grill pan and make it happen.

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