Broccoli, Herb & Lemon Pesto

Broccoli Pesto 004aThis delicate green pesto has a hot mustardy flavour and tastes quite unlike steamed or boiled broccoli. The puréeing of the broccoli releases these flavours which natural occur in the members of the brassica family.

I like this recipe as it has lots of uses and uses both the stems and
florets of the broccoli so there is very little waste. If the broccoli is really fresh include any leaves as well but be aware as it ages the leaves become quite hot and mustardy as will the rest of the plant and do other members of this family.

In Italian ‘broccoli’ means ‘little sprouts. Broccoli along with
cabbage, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, turnips and swedes belongs to the brassica family and as with all members of this family is
purported to have numerous health benefits particularly in
preventing certain types of cancer.

Broccoli, Herb & Lemon Pesto

Try pesto tossed through your favourite pasta, as a spread on
sandwiches, a healthy dip or spooned over baked potatoes or kumara. Hot, warm or cold it is delicious and adds colour and flavour to winter meals.

Broccoli Pesto with Pasta 004a

For extra flavour, cook pasta in the reserved cooking liquid from the broccoli.

Makes about 3 cups

salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 head (about 1kg) broccoli, broken in florets, stems chopped
1 clove garlic, roughly chopped
½ cup coriander leaves
½ cup parsley leaves
1 tbsp olive oil
½ cup Parmesan cheese
2 tbsp finely chopped preserved lemon

1              Bring a large saucepan of lightly salted water to the boil. Add broccoli stems, bring back to the boil and boil for 2-3 minutes, then add florets and bring back to the boil. Boil for 3-4 minutes or until broccoli is tender and bright green. Drain and reserve cooking liquid.
2              Transfer broccoli to a food processor, add garlic, coriander and olive oil and process to puree. If pesto seems dry, add a little of the reserved cooking liquid. Add cheese and lemon and pulse to combine. Season to taste with salt and black pepper.

Happy cooking and eating.

Recipe by Rachel Blackmore

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