Basil and Spinach Pesto
After our spinach bolted in June, we sort of haphazardly planted a whole packet of Basil seeds. I thought we would get a few plants, so we let them all grow – wow, we got a forest of basil! Here’s one of the bigger leaves in the bunch! That leaf is as big as the palm of my hand!
This leaf, with some fresh tomato is so good, but who can pass up lots of really awesome pesto? Bring on the basil! It is never enough, but did you know our secret for lots of pesto through the summer and into winter? Spinach. Yup, add some spinach to stretch you basil stash just a bit further.
Pesto just isn’t for pasta, try it mixed with a bit of mayo as a sandwich spread or mixed in as a chicken or turkey salad. Tastes great on fresh bread with tomato too!
Tip: To freeze pesto, combine the below, minus the cheese. Thaw when ready to use and combine with cheese and a bit more olive oil. Nothing better than garden ‘fresh’ pesto with a few inches of snow outside!
- 2 cups packed basil leaves
- 1 cup packed spinach leaves
- 1 clove of garlic (or ½ tsp dried garlic powder)
- Olive oil
- ¼ c parmesan cheese
- Salt - a pinch
- Food processor
- Optional: Hot pasta water to help with color/consistency if making this right away, not for freezing.
- Add basil, spinach, salt and garlic to food processor with about 1 tablespoon of olive oil and pulse to combine.
- Add parmesan and another tablespoon of olive oil. Puree to desired consistency, drizzle additional olive oil in as necessary. (If hot pasta water available, dribble a few teaspoons in to preserve color.)
- Add additional salt to taste (some cheese is salty, but if it tastes like it's missing something, try small amounts of salt.)