I don’t like basil. It’s a personal preference. Don’t come at me with your defenses of your beloved herb; I do not begrudge anyone their affinity for basil.
But between not liking basil and having a near-heart attack at the price of pine nuts, I’ve found most pesto recipes to be…lacking.
Enter: a glut of kale. I plant it every year in my garden because it is a bountiful crop that produces food for my family three seasons out of the year. We also receive kale often in our Hungry Harvest produce boxes, so I had to imagine new ways to serve the nutrient-packed leafy green.
Kale can indeed be bitter, so I decided to add some sweetness to the kale with baby spinach. I also pick my homegrown kale while the leaves are still small. The buttery, nutty, oily flavors of walnuts and almonds balance out some of the bitterness, too.
As you mix your own pesto, try different combinations and quantities of leafy greens and herbs as well as nuts and oils to suit your preferences.
Better-Than-Basil Spinach Pesto
- 6oz spinach
- 6oz kale
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 cup walnuts and/or almonds
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1/3 cup parmesan cheese
- 1/2 cup olive oil
|Chop spinach, kale, nuts, and garlic in food processor. Add lemon juice and parmesan cheese to the green paste that forms.|
|Slowly drizzle olive oil to achieve desired consistency and flavor. Scrape the mixture as needed and sample the pesto as it incorporates. Add salt to taste.|