Tuesday, June 16, 2015

ParsleyScape Pesto

Reasons to try making pesto out of parsley:
  • Parsley is usually available (and affordable) year-round, unlike basil.
  • Parsley pesto retains its vibrant green color much longer and better than basil pesto does.
  • Parsley is very high in vitamins A, B, C, and K, not to mention folic acid, iron, fiber, calcium, and a host of other really healthy things, and yet it's most often used (and ignored) as a garnish.
  • Parsley pesto is delicious.  Dip vegetables in it, toss it with pasta, slather it on chicken or fish or lamb kebabs or bruschetta.  I don't think you can go wrong with pesto.  We had ours on a potato/sugar snap pea salad similar to this one.

adapted from a variety of sources, including my own brain

makes about 1 cup

1 cup loosely packed parsley leaves, washed and dried
2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted (almonds or walnuts are great here too)
3 garlic scapes, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup grated Parmesan or Pecorino cheese
juice of 1/2 a lemon
3-4 tablespoons good olive oil
coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper

Tip: if you want to un-sharpen the garlic flavor just a hair, pour the lemon juice over the chopped scapes and let them sit a moment while you prepare everything else.

Put the parsley, pine nuts, scapes, lemon juice and cheese into the food processor and pulse several times until everything is coarsely chopped and blended.  With the processor running, drizzle the oil through the lid until the pesto reaches your desired texture.  Add a good pinch of salt and several grinds of black pepper, and process a little more to combine.

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