This Kale Basil Hazelnut Pesto is a versatile condiment that doubles as a way to get extra leafy green vegetables into everyday meals.
There’s something special about the first farmer’s market pesto of the season. I always look forward to the opening of our farmer’s market, and each week, eagerly anticipate the arrival of all the fresh produce, including basil, tomatoes, Swiss chard and kale. This past weekend, I picked up some fresh basil, kale and Swiss chard and packed all of these fresh veggies and herbs into one meal.
Pesto is a great foil for sneaking in green leafy vegetables like kale and Swiss chard. I’ve even used beet greens and my kids never knew. Today’s pesto recipe includes toasted hazelnuts that I found at Costco’s, but you could use walnuts, pine nuts, almonds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, or just about any nuts or seeds.
This Kale Basil Hazelnut Pesto would be great with pasta (hot or cold), but it would also be wonderful served on top of grilled chicken, salmon, or dolloped on top of a fresh tomato mozzarella salad. There are so many possibilities. Keep a jar of fresh pesto in your refrigerator all summer long and let me know what you use it on.
- 1 bunch kale
- 1 bunch basil
- 4 cloves garlic
- ¼ cup toasted hazelnuts
- ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
- sea salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
- Strip kale leaves off stems and wash well. Bring pot of water to a boil and blanch kale leaves for 30 seconds; remove to a bowl of cold water to cool down. Squeeze kale dry with hands. Place kale, basil, garlic and hazelnuts in food processor. Process, adding oil through feeder tube, until mixture is finely ground. Season to taste with salt and pepper.