Arugula Pesto

When I got home from the farmers market this weekend, my fridge was brimming with greens.  Cooking them is always good for freeing up storage space–but pureeing them is even better.  (Eating them, of course, is the very best!)

As I was chatting with my friendly local farmer, Siri, she mentioned that she posted seasonal recipes on the Local Roots Farm blog.  So of course I had to check them out right away.  This pesto recipe, like the arugula, comes straight from Local Roots.  It’s as good–and as green–as it looks.  Tonight we had it on pasta, but I’m looking forward to having it in my fridge this week to spread on an egg sandwich and drizzle over a tomato salad.  What else should I do with it? Arugula Pesto: Combine 2 packed c. arugula, 1/2 c. walnuts or pine nuts, 1/2 cup grated Parmesan, 1/2 c. olive oil, 1-3 small garlic cloves, and a few big pinches of salt in a food processor and whirl until smooth.  Taste and adjust the flavorings to your liking.

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38 thoughts on “Arugula Pesto

  1. Somer

    You must put the pesto on a foccacia sandwich with sauteed mushrooms, eggplant, tomatoes and red peppers…. At least that’s what I had one time at a farmer’s market in California farmer’s market that I have never been able to forget! ;)

    Reply
    1. emmycooks Post author

      Yes! You are so right! I don’t have eggplant but can do the rest. I love the collective wisdom of the internet. I’m making that for lunch tomorrow. Thank you!

      Reply
      1. Somer

        I’m going to make it too! A bunch of ladies in my neighborhood are picking up lunch at McDonald’s today and then we are taking the kids to the park. Imagine the looks of envy I will get when I pull out my beautiful lunch ;) (can’t support McD, I’m even afraid of their salads)!

    1. emmycooks Post author

      I used walnuts and I didn’t toast them because I love the flavor of these particular walnuts raw, and they add to the bold flavors here. If they were more astringent, I would toast them first, and I think pine nuts would be good either raw or toasted. I usually taste them first and then decide whether to toast based on how I want the finished dish to taste, since it changes the flavor so much!

      Reply
  2. Lesh Karan

    Looks very inviting :-) I love arugula pesto. I had some arugula in my garden last winter, so that was one of the things I made with it.

    Reply
  3. StefanGourmet

    I once made arugula pesto and thought it was too peppery. Is it supposed to be like that, or does it depend on the variety of arugula?

    I agree with the suggestion to have the arugula pesto with roasted vegetables. Should also be nice with haricots verts or other green beans, or with mozzarella and tomato!

    Reply
    1. emmycooks Post author

      Oh, yes, you have to like peppery to like arugula pesto. :) Sometimes arugula is more or less peppery–I think it depends on the growing conditions and the season rather than the variety, but I’m not sure. The good news is that there are countless other herb pestos that you can enjoy instead. :) And I agree that this would be great with roasted veggies, I’m going to roast up some of my remaining winter roots to enjoy with it!

      Reply
    1. emmycooks Post author

      Funny, I never would have thought of that but I have been thinking about how to get a bit more color on my walls. Vegetable photos would certainly do it! But then I’d be hungry all the time. :)

      Reply
  4. Allison

    Such a nice idea! I have an arugula-buying problem, but usually just use it for salads or on top of pizzas, so I sometimes can’t finish what I buy– this is the perfect solution.

    Reply
    1. emmycooks Post author

      I love arugula on pizza. Buying too much is a nice problem to have. :) If you toss your leftover arugula into this recipe, you can freeze the pesto in ice cube trays and use it at your convenience.

      Reply
    1. emmycooks Post author

      That sounds so good! I have been meaning to make a dish from the Ripe cookbook that is polenta wrapped in chard leaves–this would be a great addition! Thanks for the idea.

      Reply
  5. Little Sis

    Wow. Great idea. I’ve done kale pesto and while it was yummy, it didn’t really have any kick the way I expect a pesto to. THIS sounds like a better greens based pesto idea. I now NEED pesto.

    Reply
    1. emmycooks Post author

      Interesting, I have been meaning to make a kale pesto but I can see that it would be more subtly-flavored than arugula or basil. Yes to pesto! You’ll just have to keep trying (and eating!) various recipes. :)

      Reply
    1. emmycooks Post author

      I saw that recipe and I’ve been meaning to make it ever since! Maybe that will be my next springtime pesto–because basil won’t grow to pesto proportions in my garden for months still, if at all. :)

      Reply
    1. emmycooks Post author

      Good luck! Hopefully you have a good summer vacation on the other side of all your work–do we still get those now that we’re grown up? :)

      Reply
  6. Ben

    That should be smeared on a plate and topped with pan seared snapper or grouper and roasted potatoes. Or drunk straight.

    Reply
    1. emmycooks Post author

      I have never grilled polenta–I am seeing a grilled trout/grilled polenta/arugula pesto dinner in my near future. Good thing we have guests coming tonight to help eat. :)

      Reply
  7. Karista

    Great minds think alike… I posted a cilantro pesto this week. LOL! Your pesto looks delish. One of my favorite greens is arugula. I could eat it everyday. Happy cooking!

    Reply
    1. debbrunson

      Karista made cilantro pesto, your arugula pesto is beautiful, and I whipped up a large batch of spinach pesto just to use up extra greens… let’s just decide we’re all brilliant ladies ;)

      Reply
    2. emmycooks Post author

      Agreed for sure! Karista, your pesto looked great and got me so excited about the salmon I’m going to be grilling all summer. And Deb, I have never made spinach pesto! But I am strongly in favor of making room in the fridge by pureeing my greens whenever possible. :)

      Reply

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