05 November 2014

Pesto Sauce

Pesto is the tradicional northen Italy sauce usually made with basil, pesto Genovese. There are other variations with any other green such as rucula, sage or like my today's suggestion with swiss chard and rosemary. I also substitute the pine nuts by almonds and hazelnuts. I love to eat pasta with any type of pesto, but pesto combines also perfect with salads, with grilled fish or chicken, or even with baked potatoes. It is really easy to make, In  my case I used the traditional method in a mortar, but you can use a food processor and you will enjoy a lovely and fresh pesto sauce in less than two minutes. But I would suggest you to try it with the mortar and have a look to here if you really want to know the difference, I totally agree!

Swiss Chard and Rosemary Pesto
Makes enough for 6 servings
100 g swiss chard baby (or any other green)
rosmery, finely chopped
50 g  almonds and hazelnuts
60 g Parmigiano-Reggiano or Pecorino cheese (or both)
1 garlic clove
extra virgin olive oil
kosher salt, to taste

Chop the garlic and the rosemery very small. Place some of the nuts in the mortar with the green leaves and grind all over in circles until all is crushed. Add the rest of the greens, the nuts, the garlic and the salt and keep it working. Once the paste is done mix in the cheese and finally slowly add olive oil and continue stiring, 

If you use the food processor, combine the swiss chard, the rosmery, the nuts and the salt, until coarsely chopped. Do not overmix otherwise it will oxidize. Add some oil and pulse until smooth. Place it in a bowl and mix in the grated cheese.

We can also keep it in an air-tight container and drizzle remaining oil over the top and store it in the freezer. I always remove the green germ of the garlic, but just keep it if you like it. 

I ate it with pasta, I top with some extra cheese and dried tomato. Try to do your own pesto at home, as you can see is really easy.

Have a nice week.

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