Pesto, in the plural sense.

garlic scapes, of any amount, roughly chopped
a bunch of basil, stems removed, leaves fragrant
a handful of walnuts or pine nuts or such
quite a bit of grated Parmesan cheese
a sensible amount of salt, doubled
and some black pepper
in a food processor
with more olive oil than anything else.

Source: A Pesto Poem by Tammy Donroe

Garlic Ramp Cashew Pesto. One of about four different pestoes in my chest freezer. What is the plural of pesto anyway?

I make all sorts of pesto during the year. Depending on what I need to get rid of I mean what’s in season, of course. Also a great way to save the flavors of summer for an April Fool’s Day Nor’easter, if you catch my drift.

1 part nuts. Cashews, walnuts, pignolis, pistachios… roast them.
1-2 parts greens. Basil, kale, garlic scapes, broccoli raab, artichokes…
1 part olive oil. Extra virgin, as green and fruity as possible please.
1 part parmesan. Real deal reggiano – accept no substitutes.
Salt & Pepper to taste

Most easily done in the food processor. Roast the nuts for added flavor. I’d love to do it old school with a mezzaluna but a) don’t own one and b) I’m pretty sure my Alaskan (tourist) ulu isn’t quite sharp enough. Chop nuts, remove. Add greens, chop. Add back in nuts. Drizzle with olive oil. If you want to freeze it, add only enough olive oil until it comes together. When thawed add more olive oil and cheese. As always, play with it until you find a balance you like. As you can see, I tend to go light on the cheese and heavier on the nuts. It really is good without cheese – I swear! Best served with carbs, really, but also good with proteins or veg.

Pesto inspiration:
Lunch at Sixpoint’s Arugula Pesto with Almonds
Grilled Bread with Thyme Pesto and Preserved Lemon Cream
NY Times Asparagus Pesto
Smitten Kitchen’s Linguine with Tomato Almond Pesto

1. Pizza or pasta. Enough said.
2. + Crusty bread + fresh mozzarella as an appetizer or tapa with a glass of wine.
3. Add extra olive oil and slather on grilled chicken or fish straight off the grill. Cheese optional here.

I’m always looking for new pesto ideas – please suggest some!

2 thoughts on “Pesto, in the plural sense.

  1. Pingback: Windham Gardens CSA Weeks Three and Four « Snowflake Kitchen

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