If you have been reading my blogs through the summer, you will know I am a big fan of eating nasturtiums.
They are really a wonderful thing to have growing in your kitchen garden and so versatile as flowers, leaves and seeds all have an intense peppery flavour. In the summer months I was eating salads with nasturtium leaves and inspired to pickle the seeds Pickled Nasturtium Seeds - a supply of which I still have in my cupboard for adding to my winter salads and adding to sauces.
They grow so easily in the UK, so why strive to find enough basil leaves to make pesto when its easier to get your hands of 50g of nasturtium leaves?
In the recipe below, I've tried to use ingredients that are available in the UK and as many of them from my garden to keep those food miles down. Who needs pine nuts that are usually produced in China when a kitchen garden sunflower can provide us with enough seeds for a few jars?
It really compliments fish but is great on toast, with pasta, even flavouring potatoes and I'm sure with some imagination there are many more uses.
Here's the recipe:
50g Nasturtium Leaves
4 Garlic Gloves
Teaspoon Nasturtium Seeds or Pickled Nasturtium Seeds
50g Sunflower seeds (preferably home grown)
75g Hard local goat's cheese
50 ml Lemon/Lime juice
150 ml Rapeseed Oil
Salt to taste
This is the easiest method I have ever described and there are two schools of thought for producing pesto.
1. Chuck everything into a blender until everything's well mixed and looks like pesto
2. With a good sized pestle and mortar pummel all your ingredients together.
Which method do you prefer?
When the mixture has been placed into jars, I like to keep one in the fridge for regular use and the other jars in the freezer until I need them.
I used to buy artisan pesto from my local farmer's market, but now I know how easy it is to make my own there's no turning back to bought pesto again!