A basic Pesto recipe is so easy to adapt to many available herbs. I love Arugula Pesto as well. For Arugula, use some spinach in the mix to round out the flavour of any particularly peppery variety as well as a splash of lemon juice. For Basil Pesto, I like to use Sweet, Vietnamese, Purple, and many other varieties in the mix to make a complex flavour.
1/4 lb fresh basil
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup toasted pinenuts (can use almonds)
1/3 cup Parmesan, grated
1/3 cup good olive oil
salt and pepper (cheese is salty so use very little salt)
Blend together into a paste. Freeze for later use or toss in pasta, on grilled meats, etc.
Pea Shoot Pesto
1/4 lb fresh, young pea shoots
1 bunch chives, chopped (or spring onion)
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup olive oil
1/4 cup toasted pinenuts
1 lb hot cooked pasta (try Nature's Pasta!)
1/2 lb peeled, grilled shrimp (optional)(simple recipe follows)
garnish: additional pea shoots
Place the pea shoots, chives, garlic, cheese, olive oil, pine nuts salt and pepper in a food processor or blender, pulse until a thick paste forms. Toss with 1 lb cooked pasta, additional pea shoots and shrimp.
Yield: about 4 servings
One can use Pesto for a variety of applications as well. I love it in pasta but I often use it in other soups and sauces as well as stuffed in Chicken Breasts, or stuffed in Lamb Chops. When you are letting your BBQ’d steak rest, spoon a small amount onto the steak and let it melt into the grilled meat.
Try with seafood pasta like the lobster or crab & shrimp medallions, the smoked salmon ravioli or lobster crab ravioli. For more exciting and also, delicious, ways to enjoy pesto, visit Karen's blog at KarenFood.