Wednesday, March 7, 2012

W is for: Watercress & Walnut Pesto

Is it spring yet?

While I really do love winter fruits and vegetables, after awhile, you start to get a little sick of them. Let's face it...there just isn't as much as a variety available in the winter months.

One of the things I am looking forward to most is  fresh, leafy basil. There's definitely basil available in the stores in California, but it's kind of sad looking and nothing like what you see in the warmer months. So in the meantime, things like pea shoots, arugula and watercress actually make a lovely base for a nice, bright pesto in the wintertime.

This pesto was actually made by my friend Kim on the day she made the Upside Down Cake. I merely helped snap photos and eat the delicious lunch of vermicelli with watercress pesto and grilled green beans. MMMMM!

This recipe is super simple. All you need is some watercress, some toasted walnuts or pecans (we used pecans, but walnuts would be awesome and they start with "W"), freshly grated Parmesan cheese, garlic, and some olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper. We just whizzed it all together in Kim's food processor. And as a side note, this isn't just *any* food's the Kitchenaid Architect. It's the quietest food processor ever. It's like a stealth processor. Anyways, blend up the dry ingredients and drizzle in the olive oil while it's running until you reach the desired pesto consistency.

Just for fun, we decided to grill some green beans to toss in with our pasta. How many matches and paper bags does it take two city girls to light a charcoal grill? I don't know. We lost count.

Toss it together with some al dente pasta, and top with more Parmesan, lemon zest, and garnish with additional watercress leaves.

Watercress & Walnut Pesto

by Jaymee Sire
Keywords: entree condiment watercress walnut pesto

  • 1 bunch watercress leaves
  • 1/4 cup chopped walnuts or pecans, toasted
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • salt & pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  1. Combine watercress, toasted nuts, Parmesan, lemon juice, and garlic in a food processor. While machine is running, drizzle in olive oil until you reach desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper.

*Can be stored in an airtight container in refrigerator for up to 5 days
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