13 June 2015

Kale Pesto

Okay. You can turn your nose up, if you want to, but we had great pasta (and far too much of it!) last evening! This was the first time that I've made kale pesto ... and I used a recipe from Diana Henry's a change of appetite cook book. It's a 'healthy recipe', so it didn't have nuts of any sort in it. I think that when I make it again, I'll try it with walnuts and a bit more olive oil than the amount that she stipulates. This batch was really yummy ... and bright green. I used the full measure of kale and I subbed spinach leaves in instead of parsley. That worked just fine ... it needed generous salt and black pepper too.

So ... kale pesto over pasta ... next time I'm making it with Udon noodles and slivers of hot chili pepper.

Kale Pesto

Makes about 2 cups


4 c. fresh kale leaves, tough ribs removed
1 c. spinach leaves
2 tbsp. butter
1/4 c. extra virgin olive oil ... a green, grassy flavored oil
1/4 c. flat leaf parsley leaves
2 anchovies, well-drained of their oil
2 large cloves garlic, minced
1/2 to 3/4 c. grated Parmesan or Pecorino cheese
a generous pinch red pepper flakes

Making the Pesto:

1. Get a large pot of water boiling on the stove.

2. Prep the kale leaves and drop them in the boiling water. Cover the pot for three minutes.

3. At the 3 minute mark, add the spinach leaves and cover for 2 minutes.

4. Drain the kale and spinach really well, squeezing the water out of it.

5. Break up the clumps of leaves and place them in the bowl of a food processor.

6. Add the garlic, red pepper flakes, parsley, olive oil, butter, and anchovies. Pulse the pesto to the consistency that you like.

7. Add the grated cheese (and nuts if you like) and pulse again to make a relatively smooth pesto sauce.

8. Taste and add Kosher salt and black pepper to taste. 

9. If you want the pesto looser, add more olive oil and pulse.

10. Serve over warm pasta (spaghettini or linguine) or Udon noodles.


  1. I just found your site but can't find the email button to subscribe to it. Would you please put one in! Thanks!

  2. oh wow... I feel like i've missed a whole bunch of posts from you... what a brilliant thing to do with kale, which quite frankly is getting a little boring.. I love this!


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