We’ve been doing a lot more walking in the woods recently and I happened upon a HUGE patch of wild garlic. It’s probably not the sort of thing that should get a 37 year old man excited, but in this case it did. I’d heard about a massive wild garlic patch locally but had never found it… until now! I could start making wild garlic pesto!
There’s a local restaurant that we go to that use the wild garlic when it’s in season for soups, salads and other such things. I’d heard about wild garlic pesto recipes that could be made, alongside wild garlic soup, wild garlic butter and wild garlic bread. I’ve always enjoyed it when I’ve eaten it and it’s clearly a really versatile ingredient.
We love pesto in our family – even the kids do too, which is handy because it means a pesto, peas, ham, cheese and pasta dish can be thrown together in literally minutes and goes down an absolute treat with the kids!
Wild garlic pesto recipe…
This makes enough for a couple of good sized jars, which means you have plenty in storage for when you run out. It keeps well in the fridge – we’ve had some for 10 days and it’s still absolutely fine.
Wild Garlic Pesto Ingredients…
- 3 x handfuls of wild garlic (washed and drained dry)
- 150g of Parmesan cheese
- 100g of pine nuts
- 150ml of olive oil
- Teaspoon of salt
- squeeze of lemon juice
- 1 clove of garlic
- Once you have washed the wild garlic, drain it dry. It doesn’t have to be bone dry, but it can’t be soaking wet either.
- Put all of the dry ingredients into the food processor and squash them down.
- Add around 50mls of the olive oil and the lemon to the mix. Start to blend.
- It may not mix everything in yet, so keep stopping the mixer and pushing any un-blended leaves down.
- Gradually add the rest of the oil until you reach the consistency you like.
- Taste it to check the seasoning and adjust accordingly.
The oil and the lemon seem to help keep it fresh for a while. When you get it out of the fridge to use again, just give it a little stir and mix it around again to bring it back to life. It quickly returns to what it was before it sat in the fridge for a few days.
By the way, you’ll need a good food processor. Here’s the one I use. It’s not cheap (although I paid less than the price advertised here), but it’s really versatile and it’s basically bullet proof…
How to use wild garlic pesto
There’s a bunch of different ways you can use wild garlic pesto – here’s how we’ve used ours…
- Drizzled over potatoes roasted in a Canarian style, as a replacement for mojo sauce. Very nice!
- As a sauce inside a chicken breast. Cut a pocket inside a chicken breast, fill with wild garlic pesto and cheese, then wrap in parma ham and bake in the oven.
- As a pasta sauce – stir it through penne, linguine or spaghetti and top with grated parmesan cheese.
- Melted with cream cheese to form a sauce that can be paired with chicken and served with potatoes or pasta.
There’ll be a million other recipes for it out there – just be creative and you’ll find plenty of them. There’s always new an interesting ways to use great ingredients. Use it in sandwiches, as a salad dressing, as a seasoning in soups, over roasted vegetables – there’s plenty of options for you!
Wild Garlic Pesto Taste
On first glance it may seem really strong – it’s a pesto made with powerful ingredients, but it’s not as punchy as you’d image. When it’s cooked it’s even less powerful, but it’s still really tasty. Don’t be worried you’ll be putting people off coming near you for weeks on end, despite the amount of garlic you’re putting into the recipe!
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