Friday, February 12, 2010

Spinach Pesto

I've had lots of pesto over the years - some are super creamy, some have too much basil or some have too much garlic.
I went to a cooking class once, and got a recipe for spinach pesto, which I loved, and whenever I've cooked it, has been a hit at the dinner table.  I think it's the combination of the spinach that takes the bite off an overwhelming basil flavour, often found in many pestos.

This recipe is not exactly the one I was given at the class, it's my haphazard throwing together of ingredients for a pesto for two servings.  It's really such an easy thing to make, there's really no excuse to not make your own.

one handful basil (approx 7g)
one handful baby spinach leaves
half handful continental parsley
a pinch of salt
1/2 clove of garlic
2 tbsp Parmesan cheese
3 tbsp olive oil
200g pasta


1.  Boil water for the pasta. Once the water is boiled, add sea salt and pasta and cook pasta as per the packet's directions.
 2.  Drain the pasta, but retain the pasta water.
 3.  Place basil, spinach, parsley, salt and garlic in a food processor, and process until ingredients are minced and mixed well. [Note: If you have a mini food processor (Bamix-type instrument), this is best for this amount of pesto.]

4.  Place 2 tbsp olive oil in the pesto mix, and blend until mixture has a creamy consistency.

5.  Place the pesto mixture in a bowl.  Add the Parmesan cheese and 1 tbsp of olive oil.  Mix well.
 6.  Place pasta in a bowl.  Add 1 tbsp of pesto and one large serving spoon of the pasta water.  Mix the pasta, pesto and water well.

7.  Keep repeating step 6 until the pesto is finished.

8.  Serve with extra Parmesan cheese and cracked pepper. 

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