Friday, August 31, 2012

Mixed Greens Pesto

I'm calling this Mixed Greens Pesto because it sounds so much better than "Every Green Thing I Could Find In My Kitchen Pesto".  But the truth is you can make pesto with pretty much any green, leafy vegetable that you can get your hands on, with the exception of maybe lettuce.  Depending on what you use, you'll get slightly different flavors - but it's fun to experiment and I haven't had a batch that's turned out bad yet.  And on that theme, I don't measure anything so this recipe isn't going to be super specific.  But really, it's pretty hard to screw up.

To begin, I gathered up all of the greens that I had on hand (most via our CSA).  I'm using spinach, chard, 2 kinds of basil, and parsley.

You will also need olive oil (mine is basil infused but regular works just fine), garlic, lemon juice, parmesan cheese, and nuts of some sort.  Pine nuts are traditional for pesto but I didn't have any on hand so I'm using walnuts.  I think almonds would probably work well too.
Oh, and a food processor.

Wash the greens and remove any big, tough, stalks.  Place in a food processor.

Chop.  The greens will "shrink" and give you room to add the remaining ingredients.  Add your garlic, parmesan, nuts, and a little sprinkling of lemon juice.  Now, while the food processor is running, drizzle the olive oil in until it reaches the consistency you would like.  Taste, adjust flavors if needed.  You can also add a little salt and pepper if you want.

I leave mine a little thicker to use as a dip or spread and then if I want to put it on pasta, thin with some chicken broth.
And this stuff freezes well.  I make a bunch in the summer when we have a lot of leafy vegetables and freeze to use all winter.


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