Friday, June 3, 2011

Asparagus Pesto



From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...Here, as promised, is the asparagus pesto I spoke of yesterday. It's made with the odd bits and trimmings left from yesterday's pickling marathon. The pesto can, of course, be made with perfect spears, but because all the ingredients used here are pureed, that would be a waste of lovely vernal green. I love the mild flavor of this sauce and serve it with pasta, fish or chicken. I am aware of how limiting its color is. The Silver Fox has dubbed this Shrek Sauce and, of course, our older grandsons have picked up on it. It's best we keep that our little secret. I'd rather Mark Bittman, who develop the recipe, not know how my family has defamed his lovely pesto. You will need a food processor or blender to make this. The recipe is a study in simplicity. Everything goes into the bowl of a blender or food processor and is pulsed until you have the texture of you are looking for. I've taken mine to a sauce-like consistency. That's all there is to it. While the pesto can be refrigerated for up to a day, its color does not improve with age. If you want a lovely vibrant sauce make it just before it is to be served. Here's the recipe.

Asparagus Pesto...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite courtesy of Mark Bittman

Ingredients:
Salt
1 pound asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2-inch segments
1 clove garlic, or more to taste
1/4 cup pine nuts
1/4 cup olive oil, or more as desired
3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Freshly ground black pepper
Juice of 1/2 lemon, or to taste

Directions:

1) Bring a large pot of water to a boil and salt it. Add asparagus and cook until fully tender but not mushy, 8 to 10 minutes. Drain well, reserving some cooking liquid, and let asparagus cool slightly.
2) Transfer asparagus to a food processor and add garlic, pine nuts, 2 tablespoons of oil, Parmesan, a pinch of salt and, if needed, a couple of tablespoons of the cooking liquid. Process mixture, stopping to scrape down sides of container as necessary, and gradually add remaining oil and a bit more of reserved cooking liquid to moisten if it is needed. Add lemon juice and season with salt and pepper to taste, pulse one last time, and serve over pasta, fish or chicken. The pesto can be refrigerated for up to 1 day. Yield: 4 to 6 servings.








One Year Ago Today: Asparagus Soup















Two Years Ago Today: Fresh Mint Ice Cream







You might also enjoy these recipes:
Artichoke Lemon Pesto - Ciao Chow Linda
Broccoli Pesto - A Thought for Food
Basil Mint Pesto with Walnut Sauce - Pinch My Salt
Wild Garlic Pesto - Nami Nami
Lemon Arugula Pesto - Dixie Chik Cooks
Mom's Pesto Genovese - Chef Tom's Blog
Basil-Walnut Pesto - Smitha's Spicy Flavors
Cilantro Walnut Pesto - Little Corner of Mine
Dandelion Pesto - David Lebovitz
Roasted Zucchini Pesto - Angie's Recipes

65 comments:

Elaine said...

Shrek Sauce...I love it! :)

Tiffanee said...

OOOH!! Two of my faves put together. This is brilliant!!

Sunanda said...

Looks healthy and yummy.. Nice clicks...

Sunanda's Kitchen

yummychunklet said...

This looks great! I wonder if the color would vary if the purple passion asparagus were used. And, the ice cream caught my eye as well!

Duncan D. Horne said...

Before I started reading I thought you might drink it down from the cup! Now that would be something!

Duncan In Kuantan

Nami @ Just One Cookbook said...

Hi Mary! I come here and I often learn something new. Asparagus pesto!! I never thought of making it. You are amazing Mary... And I love both ice cream and the asparagus soup too! Lots of good stuff on your site.

Martha said...

It's always nice to have a recipe that takes advantage of those bits and pieces!! I've been enjoying English asparagus and it is magnificent!!! I've not made any other pesto than tradition but perhaps it is time to try!
(When I get home, that is!)

Anna A. said...

I would love to try this Shrek Sauce! I bet it would be good with pistachios instead of pine nuts = extra green. On the hunt for asparagus this weekend...

thecompletecookbook said...

I love Shrek so Shrek sauce it is! Brilliant recipe Mary. It must be great served with pasta.
:-) Mandy

The Harried Cook said...

I want a jar of Shrek Sauce! :) It looks great, Mary... I love asparagus, and I am sure this would be yummy too... Thanks for sharing :)

Maris(In Good Taste) said...

I definitely have to make this! Have a lovely week-end!

Hovkonditorn said...

I like this recipe! Have a great weekend!

tandysinclair.com said...

What a great use of the left overs! Have a super weekend :)

elle marie said...

HI Mary... you have a plethora of ideas, don't you? I've never considered using Asparagus as a Pesto... I quite like that idea.

Ruth said...

Ooh! I love asparagus - so this is perfect!

Alessandra said...

I love the idea of an asparagus pesto, it must be delicious!!!

Have a happy week-end

ciao
Alessandra

Yasmin said...

Haha! This is brilliant! I love the sauce!

Cheers,
yas
www.tickle-your-tastebuds.blogspot.com

Three-Cookies said...

Innovative. You've taken on the asparagus season in full stride.

Rita said...

How creative! Love the colour and the taste must be wonderful.
Rita

Pegasuslegend said...

outstanding originality here! I would love as a spread even on a panini nice job with this one lovely photo too!

Sissi said...

Finally an exciting alternative to the soup I always make with harder stems of the asparagus! I think I might need this recipe very soon.

Kim said...

Love this pesto, it's a great way to use all these veggies! Looks delicious!

Jenna Lee said...

It looks pretty but I would have to try it to believe its delicious! It does look very healthy!
Happy Friday! Hope you have a great weekend!

Clint said...

This I can already taste on my pasta. Wonderful!

Carol @ There's Always Thyme to Cook said...

Looks so good. Would love this. LOL @ Shrek sauce!

Jenn said...

I think this is definitely a way I could enjoy asparagus... maybe I should give this a try? It does have a lovely color!

Inside a British Mum's Kitchen said...

I've never heard of asparague pesto and I'm so glad you shared this - wonderful idea that sounds delicious
mary

daphne said...

Another way to add veges in the diet! a sneaky way too I ahve to say!! LOL Love the colour and can just imagine the richness of the pesto!

Lucy said...

Awesome, love it, shrek sauce is on the menu:)

Karen said...

What a fabulous idea for leftover asparagus! "Shrek sauce" is just the cutest name for it. Perfect way to get the kids to eat their veggies. ;-) Have a great weekend!

StephenC said...

Shrek, I love that. I would never have thought of doing this. A great idea.

brandi said...

i love this idea! i've seen recipes for all kinds of other pestos, but never asparagus.

Nicole@HeatOvenTo350 said...

It's so pretty! I love having more uses for asparagus

kitchen flavours said...

Your "shrek sauce" definitely looks awesome! I think that Mark Bittman would chuckle with glee! The pesto looks lovely and sound delicious! Thank you for sharing, and have a lovely weekend, Mary!

The Fajdich Times said...

I love this recipe! Can't wait to try it. The mint ice cream also caught my eye:)

June said...

It's a beautiful thing Mary! I can't wait to try it though I'll have to make it in front of the Big Guy so he doesn't think it's peas. LOL

That Girl said...

I used to have contacts that tuned my eyes this color. My friends said they made me look like an alien!

Tes said...

Mary,
I've never thought of asparagus pesto before. The color of it looks just like my city where it've just got its first rain... very fresh and alive. I am definitely going to try this on some warm toasts :)

Priya said...

Never thought of making pesto with asparagus,stunning click..

Joanne said...

What a super fun pesto variation! I would love this over pasta!

Wendy Irene said...

I am love seeing what you make with all the asparagus you bought. I have some in my fridge, so I appreciate the inspiration. I hope you have a lovely weekend!

Adam said...

The colour actually reminded me of Ninja Turtles because it's a very similar colour to these green Ninja Turtle cookies we had when I was a kid (which I randomly and excitedly spoke about to co-workers and they just looked at me funny).
And I love asparagus, but given the outrageous price of pine nuts these days, I'd substitue for walnuts probably :). Thanks for another great recipe.

Claudia said...

I made this - or something similar last spring and all loved it. I actually like the light-ish green - but I love the name "Shrek Sauce" and from now on - it will forever be Shrek Sauce and not asparagus pesto.

Ginny said...

How funny, but I love the name!!! But forgetting the name, do they like it? I'm off to look at your mint ice-cream recipe!

Miriam said...

I love it!! I bet it's perfect on any pasta, or pizza even. Have a beautiful weekend!! Miriam@Meatless Meals For Meat Eaters

PeggyR said...

This sounds very different!

FOODalogue said...

That looks great, Mary. I've made pesto with a lot of various vegetables and herbs but not asparagus. I'll have to remedy that soon.

Hazel said...

How interesting! I am always looking for new types of pesto. I think it's so versatile, yum!

Parsley Sage said...

Today is a green day! Brilliant pesto. It looks like a lovely, yummy, healthy milkshake :) Just had pasta! Well done

Lenia said...

Very interesting idea!I love this version of pesto!

Rambling Tart said...

Oh wow! The title alone makes me happy, Mary. I HAVE to try this soon. Maybe with homemade pasta. :-)

Pam said...

I've never heard of asparagus pesto - it looks beautiful and sounds delicious.

Barbara said...

Now here's something I can really love, Mary. Asparagus is my favorite veggie. I can think of so many ways to use this! Very unusual and I'm looking forward to making it soon.

LoveIsBrightAndYourMySunShine said...

it looks so fresh and yummy

Cassie @ Bake Your Day said...

Sounds wonderful Mary, I have never considered using asparagus for pesto!

Pam said...

Oh, I want some Shrek sauce :)

~~louise~~ said...

Shrek Sauce! The grandkids are coming for a visit in July, they love asparagus. I can't wait to surprise them with this.

What do you think about freezing it?

Thanks for sharing, Mary...

sheila @ Elements said...

Your Shrek sauce is so beautiful!!!! And I'm sure it tastes just as good as it looks! I'd love to try this in a pasta one day. :)

Maria said...

The pesto sounds delicious, what a clever idea!

Mij├║ said...

Bien este pesto.
Un saludito

Tasha said...

What a tasty version of pesto! I'd think that with the name Shrek Sauce, it might appeal more to little ones.

Cooking Creation said...

Shrek Sauce! lol It sounds tasty :)

Now Serving said...

the color is insanely appealing - Love this!

sally said...

It definitely looks like Shrek Sauce! I'm sure it is really delicious though.

lena said...

your sharing is very much appreciated and i think the colour looks vibrant!

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