Graduation party, and food of course

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Its party time. My little brother – who actually is not that small – graduated from high school. I’m so proud! After all the years of working hard, stressful times and impatiently waiting for the results, there’s finally holidays now. It’s such a relief to know that you can go on with your plans and focus on your own future, the way you want it.

And he made the best choice ever. After I graduated school, I went to a really special place in the centre of the Netherlands: the Bernard Lievegoed College for Liberal Arts. This year is filled with everything an adolescent needs: personal encouragement and development, inspiration, professional growth, art, a chance to discover your real you, and thus a chance to discover your real interests. Furthermore the place is wonderful. At a woodland estate, in a white villa, surrounded with old trees on a green field, at its turn surrounded by a forest. It is the perfect place to take the time and space you need, just for yourself. While at the same time you are being encouraged and inspired by 60 other young people who are trying to find their way in life. Together you create a close community, comparable to one big family. Yes, it was the best year of my (short) life.

Of course I wanted to make the food for this special day and make sure that my brother could spend all his time with his friends and other people who had come for him. Unfortunately I don’t remember most of the things I made – at least not the measurements/ all the ingredients – so I will start with the four dips.

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The first one is the regular pesto – always good.

This is what you need:

  • leafs of one basil plant
  • handful pine seeds, roasted
  • 200 g parmesan cheese, rasped
  • 5 tbsp olive oil, extra vierge
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • salt & pepper

Add all the ingredients to a bowl and blend. Make sure that the pesto is not too smooth so you can feel and taste the different ingredients. If its not oily enough – it should be really oily – add some more.

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Secondly, a super simple, super tasty cashew & sun dried tomato dip.

This is what you need:

  • 400-500 g salted cashew nuts
  • 10 big sun dried tomato’s and a bit of the oil

Add the cashew nuts to a blender and coarsely blend. Then add the sun dried tomato’s and blend until the tomato’s are well-combined, but make sure the mixture is not to smooth.

Variation: add some feta cheese, it gives an extra dimension to the dip

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Hummus

This is what you need:

  • chickpeas, 400 g + the humid
  • 2 tbsp tahini
  • dash of olive oil
  • 1/4 red pepper, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp turmeric
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp grounded ginger
  • salt & pepper

Add all the ingredients to a bowl together and blend carefully. Season with salt and pepper

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This one doesn’t look that delicious, but I can tell you it is: Mint-pea pesto

This is what you need:

  • 400 g peas, cooked
  • 1 cup sunflower seeds
  • handful of fresh mint and lemon balm
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • dash of olive oil
  • 2 hands of pecorino cheese, grated
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • salt & pepper

Just as easy as the others, add everything together and blend well, then season with salt and pepper.

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