Asparagus Pesto Recipe
This perennial spring favorite is a great, quick and tasty treat for any hungry household. Asparagus can be sliced into 1/4 inch pieces and tossed with olive oil, minced shallots, chopped cucumbers, salt and pepper and champagne or balsamic vinegar for a quick snack.
They also respond well to a quick sear on a grill or broiler, just until some of the outer buds and skin begin to brown, toss in olive oil, salt and pepper to taste and serve with a lemon wedge.
This recipe came from a Spring Equinox dinner party, served by our hostess Katherine Barr, although it takes a bit more preparation, it is worth it!
- 1 pound asparagus
- 1/4 cup pine nuts
- 2 or 3 medium garlic cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 ounces freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (about 2/3 cup)
- 1 pound pasta of choice
- Trim tougher ends off asparagus. Cut stalks crosswise into 2-inch pieces, reserving tips.
- In a steamer set over boiling water steam stalks, covered, until just blanched, but still with crispness, 2 minutes.
- Add reserved asparagus tips and steam, covered, until just tender, about 1 minute.
- Immediately transfer asparagus to ice water to stop cooking. Drain asparagus well and pat dry.
- In a food processor pulse pine nuts and garlic with salt until finely minced.
- Add asparagus and oil and pulse until asparagus is coarsely chopped, with pesto consistency. Transfer pesto to a large bowl and stir in Parmigiano-Reggiano.
- Cook pasta in boiling water until al dente. Reserve 1/3 cup pasta cooking water and drain pasta in a colander.
- Add pasta and reserved cooking water to pesto, tossing to coat, and season with salt and pepper.
Looking for other ways to cook asparagus? Check out our post Three Great Ways to Cook Asparagus.
Pesto photo credit: elana’s pantry via photopin cc
Asparagus photo credit: madlyinlovewithlife via photopin cc
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