I've never been a fan of store bought jars of pesto and sauces. I'm very conscious of additives and sugars in processed food, and I always like to know exactly what I'm eating. It is for this reason I like to make my own sauces and pesto. I normally just make a bog standard basil pesto (excluding the cheese), but last week I decided to make some pesto with a bit of a twist. I've used parsley instead of basil, and blanched almonds instead of pine nuts. I've also upped the 'kick' of the pesto with a deseeded whole red chilli and a large clove of garlic. I prefer my pesto pulsed rather than blitzed smooth, the texture adds much more to a dish.
I find that this pesto lasts up to two weeks in the fridge, and it's not only good with plain pasta, I used it last week to pimp up a roast chicken,brushing the pesto all over the chicken before roasting in the oven, and the other day I brushed it over some thick cod fillets before baking in the oven. Today I'm using it as a sauce for my homemade wholewheat sweet potato gnocchi. There are so many more possibilities with this pesto, I find myself reaching for it in the fridge time and time again.
- I bag of flat leaf parsley
- 1 fat garlic clove, peeled and chopped
- 1 red chilli, deseeded and chopped
- 100g of blanched almonds
- Salt & pepper
- Juice of 1/2 fresh lemon
- Extra Vigin olive oil, approx 100mls (add more if you want a 'wetter' pesto)
- Simply add all the above ingredients to a mini food blender and pulsed until you get your own desired consistency. Add more oil if you wish.;
- Store in a sterilized container or jar.