Sunday, 22 April 2007

Going Green

A glance at supermarket dips these days will quickly alert you to the fact we have moved firmly beyond the standard basil and pinenut pesto. In all honestly I'm rather attached to the original but for something a little more sharp and peppery, try this. It certainly beats those overpriced tubs that last all of five minutes. You'll have plenty left to toss through pasta, add to toasted pides or serve with grilled meats. I'm also a huge believer in the magic of pesto and eggs as served above with a side of smoked salmon.

Rocket, Parmesan and Cashew Pesto

1 1/4 cups firmly packed basil leaves
3/4 cup rocket
1 clove garlic chopped
3/4 cup grated parmesan
1/2 cup cashews
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

Blitz in the processor until smooth but still a little chunky. Baby puree consistency is not desirable. Season to taste and serve immediately or pour over enough olive oil to cover and refrigerate covered for up to 1 week.

Makes about 1.5 cups


This is wonderful with grilled meat but also makes a great starter spread over slices of (grilled) crusty bread, topped with fresh mozzarella and drizzled with olive oil and a good smattering of sea salt and pepper.

1 cup almonds
1 cup walnuts
2 garlic cloves
1 bunch parsley
1 bunch basil
3/4 cup olive oil
1/3 cup verjuice

Roast the nuts at 200° C/390° F) oven for about 15 minutes. Rub the walnuts between tea towels to remove the bitter skins. In a mortar and pestle pound the nuts then add the herbs and garlic. When roughly chopped slowly add the oil and then verjuice. If you'd rather be spared a workout in a food processor blend the nuts, garlic and herbs together until roughly chopped. Leave the motor on and slowly add the oil in a thin stream then repeat with the verjuice. Season to taste.


Anonymous said...

This looks great! Just the other day I was thinking I wanted to make some pesto and now I have a new recipe to try. :)

Ari (Baking and Books)

Freya and Paul said...

I do find regular pesto to be a little bit rich so this sharper version could be just want I need! It looks lovely!

Truffle said...

Thanks Ari and thanks for reading :)

I agree Freya and Paul. If you want something sharper I strongly recommend the agresto. The verjuice gives it a nice zing that lightens it up well.

knitphomaniac said...

Ah, can never have too much pesto!

I'm finding myself giddy that my garden has finally waken up from the long winter... My rhubarb is making it's way up and can't wait to start a new batch of rhubarb-themed pestos this year!

Thanks so much for this recipe, I'll be sure to try it!

Patricia Scarpin said...

Truffle, I'm willing to try the rocket pesto - I love it's peppery taste.

Truffle said...

Hope you like it Knitphomaniac. I am envious hearing about your garden. I really must start making an effort with mine so I can avoid all that overpriced produce.

Patricia- my mother is the same way about rocket. Actually it's practically the only salad green she will eat since she loves that peppery hit so much! Thanks for stopping by :)

Little Foodie said...

You have a delicious blog. I could try everything on it.

Cynthia said...

Your pesto is so fresh and green, makes me want to dip a hunk of bread into it :)

Truffle said...

Little Foodie- that's so sweet. Thank you!

Cynthia- what a lovely thing to say! Thanks very much :)

bee said...

what a unique and beautiful dish!!! i'm adding you to my blogroll, if you don't mind.

Truffle said...

Thanks so much Bee! That's very kind of you. I've added you to mine :)