It’s going to be spring soon, right? (If you are in Minnesota you are painfully aware that it is May 3rd and snowing. I hope wherever you are that snow is already a distant memory.) With that hope of spring & summer I am looking forward to greens and fresh herbs from the garden. I created this pesto to help me ignore the white stuff outside my window:
Kale, Mint & Parsley Pesto
- ½ cup – ¾ cup sliced almonds, toasted & cooled (or whichever nut you prefer)
- ¾ tsp. to 1 tsp. salt
- 2 cloves garlic
- Two “fistfuls” of parsley, washed and dried
- 1 “fistful” of mint, leaves only, washed & dried
- lacinato kale (or whatever kind you have available), 1 bunch (I did set aside 3 or 4 leaves for a green smoothie)
- 2 Tbsp coconut oil or flax oil (or use more olive oil)
- Approximately ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
In a small sauté pan toast the almonds and set aside to cool.
Put three-quarters teaspoon (3/4 tsp.) salt, the garlic, and one fistful of the parsley into a food processor and process together. Scrape down the sides a few times if necessary. Then add the cooled almonds and process again.
Now add the remaining parsley and the mint and process once more. Keep scraping down the sides of the bowl as you process ingredients together. Finally add the kale and process.
Add in the coconut oil (or flax oil), if using along with about ¼ cup of the olive oil. Process again and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Taste. Adjust the salt if you feel you need more. If you like the consistency you can stop here. If you’d like the pesto to be more liquid add more olive oil until you reach the consistency you prefer.
Note: I don’t care for cheese in my pesto. But if you do like cheese you can add some shredded parmesan to the recipe, about one-quarter to one-half cup of cheese. Also, you can use another type of greens (such as spinach, chard, or collard greens) in place of the kale. That goes for the herbs too. Feel free to use whichever combination of herbs you like best. If you have more pesto than you can consume, pesto freezes wonderfully in ice cube trays. Store the cubes in a Ziploc bag and remove a few for a quick meal later on. Just remember to label the bag with what you put in your pesto. I always forget to do that and then have “mystery pesto” meals.
- Add this pesto to hot pasta. I like it with spaghetti and penne noodles.
- Spread a thin layer of the pesto onto hot, toasted baguette slices and top with shrimp or roast beef. I enjoyed it with some cold, shredded bison roast (much like roast beef) and it made a very nice lunch.
- Use it along with hummus to make a Mediterranean dip, a great party appetizer. You can find a recipe for that here.