Asparagus Pesto – We Heart Local BC

Asparagus Pesto

Asparagus Pesto

Submitted by: Jennifer Schell

Food writer Jennifer Schell says: “This is a gorgeous, fresh-tasting pesto that has an unbelievable saucy texture and super green colour.  It’s great tossed with pasta, on grilled chicken, in a panini, on bruschetta…basically on anything that likes pesto.”

1 pound asparagus snapped into pieces
1 clove garlic
¼ cup pine nuts (If you want to keep it local, use walnuts. I hope my neighbourhood squirrel gang leaves a few behind this year!)
3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2 tbsps extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 tbsp lemon juice
1-2 tbsps lemon zest (make sure you use organic lemons especially when zesting)
2 tbsps chopped fresh basil

Boil asparagus until just done in salted water.  Drain and let cool.  Into your food processor, add the asparagus, garlic, nuts, extra-virgin olive oil, Parmesan cheese, a shake of salt and a grind of fresh pepper.  Whizz for a couple of seconds – pause to scrape down the sides – add the lemon juice and zest – then whizz again.  Season with more salt and pepper or lemon to taste and scrape into bowl.  Stir in chopped basil.

This will last a couple of days in the fridge – but its brilliant green colour will change, so best to use right away tossed with a big bowl of the pasta of your choice.

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