Friday, June 24, 2011

I never thought I would be so excited about...

Chard and kale pesto!  I had quite a bit of kale and chard leftover in my CSA share last week and yesterday I had to pick up more!  I was reading the Crystal Spring Farm's newsletter when I came across the word pesto.  I LOVE pesto and I couldn't believe I hadn't thought to make a pesto out of those lovely greens yet.  Can I say pesto one more time?  Pesto!  I'm going to say that instead of presto! from now on.  Not that I frequently yell, "Presto!"  Anyway, I made a plan to make it as soon as I got home but I was too excited and made it right then.  It came out so YUMMY and PRETTY!

Here is where I started.  Greens (check).  Parmesan cheese (check).  I don't know exactly how much but what you see in that picture is about what I used. 


The beautiful green color and absolute freshness of all the greens is so inspiring!


Parmesan cheese is pretty fantastic and inspiring as well.


The main ingredients in a pesto are the veggies/herbs, cheese and olive oil.  I also use salt and pepper and I am including a picture of my salt box and Vic Firth pepper mill because they are two of my favorite things in the kitchen.  Those and my Microplane.  And my immersion blender.  And the dehydrator.  I have more favorites but we'll leave it at my top five.


In case you were wondering, and I know you were, I fill my pepper mill with a local company's pepper, Gryffon Ridge Spice Merchants.  Their quality and selection is outstanding and their prices are more than reasonable.


This is what the pesto looks like mid-process.  I tear the greens and put them in the food processor with some olive and Parmesan cheese.  Because the greens are so plentiful I have to do it in batches.  When it is all done I throw it all back in the food processor to give it one more chop and mix. 




These are the olive oils that I use.  I use the standard EVOO (extra virgin olive oil) pictured at right to mix the pesto.  When it's done I drizzle the fancier stuff on the left over the top.  Dafni is a Maine made product that can be found on-line and at farmers markets.  I actually found Dafni at the Brunswick winter farmers market when my daughter insisted on trying most of their oils so she could eat all of their bread.  They were so smooth and tasty that I now I have a bottle on hand all of the time for dipping and drizzling!


After I tasted the pesto I realized it was missing something.  My good friend, garlic.  So, I added about one clove.


And this is what it ended up looking like!

Presto! It's pesto! 

I am lucky to have a taste-tester in the house.  I have to give my daughter credit because she does such a good job trying new foods.... and new recipes.  And though she is making a horrible face she actually said the pesto was OK.  My sister-in-law, friend and self thought it was absolutely delicious.  It's also about 7:30am in this picture and that might be a little early, even for pesto.


So, there you have it!  The kale and chard pesto recipe via photos!  
The recipe is basically:
kale & chard (you can also add spinach) torn into pieces and put in the food processor 
Parmersan cheese & olive oil 
salt and pepper (to taste)
garlic (about a clove)
drizzle some EVOO or fresh squeeze lemon on top!
This is really great as a spread on anything... fish, bread, chicken! Enjoy!









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