Last week we made Olive Oil Kale Crisps, a fun and delicious way to introduce kids to the incredibly nutritious vegetable, Kale. But where do we go from here? The kids like the Kale as chips, but ONLY as chips, yet the beautiful bunches of brightly colored Kale call to me every Saturday at the farmers market. I know we can only make so many batches of Kale chips before they tire of them – so how else can we prepare this incredibly nutritious vegetable? How can we turn it into a meal they will enjoy?
Enter Pesto. Pesto by definition is an olive oil based sauce made with herbs and garlic. Traditionally, it is made with olive oil, basil, garlic, Parmesan cheese and pine nuts. However, having eaten many versions of pesto utilizing different greens I knew a Pesto would be the perfect way to introduce Kale in a different form to the kids.
With slightly wilty bunch of Kale from the previous week’s farmers market shopping, and some left over walnuts in the pantry, I set to work and less than half an hour later, my kids were slurping up long noodles of spaghetti coated in one of my favorite green veggies. Hooray!
Kid-Approved Kale & Walnut Pesto
Special Equipment: Food Processor
Time: 5 minutes
Serves: makes approximately 1 cup pesto
- 2 cups roughly torn kale, any variety (approximately 3 large stems, tough stalk removed)
- 1/2 clove garlic
- 3 tbsp small walnut pieces, toasted* (*see below)
- 2 tsp lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 cup good quality extra virgin olive oil
- Place all ingredients (except olive oil) in the food processor.
- Pulse until ingredients are finely chopped.
- Turn food processor to on and with food processor running, slowly drizzle olive oil over the ingredients until incorporated.
- Turn off food processor and remove pesto to jar.
*For Toasted Walnuts:
- line a small baking sheet or pie plate with foil and add walnut pieces.
- Preheat toaster oven to 350.
- Bake until lightly golden and fragrant (1-2 minutes) shaking pan occasionally for even cooking.
- **Walnuts can also be toasted in a small dry skillet over medium heat.
- Over pasta
- Over grilled meats, chicken or fish
- As a sandwich (or grilled panini) spread
- As a dip for baked pita chips, fresh pita, focaccia or other soft bread
Until next week…
© 2012, kimgerber. All rights reserved.