This pesto veers a bit from the basic basil variety. Although the usual suspects are still there – pine nuts, parmesan, and garlic – this version has a peppery kick from the arugula, and lemon zest brightens it up on the back end. Use this pesto to dress up a sandwich, stir it into hummus or ranch, or go old school (like I did) and top your pasta with it – cold or hot.
By the way (*patting myself on the back*) the basil in this recipe was grown in my very own herb garden – I kept it alive long enough to actually use it! The slugs killed some of it, but with the rest, I was able to make this yummy sauce! For some reason, the slugs LOVE the basil! Pesky little buggers!!! They have not yet managed to kill my rosemary, thyme, oregano, or pinot noir. Yep – I’m growing pinot noir – I’m going to start a vineyard in my backyard, make some fabulous wine, and be discovered as the next up and coming wine producer. (Is my sarcasm coming through yet?) But really, wouldn’t that be cool?! I think you’re supposed to live on a hill…
I just love the bright green color and the fresh flavors – It just smells like summer! PS – If you’d like to preserve some “summer” for later, this pesto can be frozen. Just pack it into a mason jar and cover with a thin layer of olive oil. It’ll keep this way for a few months. It’ll also keep stored in the fridge this way for a few days. Enjoy!
- 2 cups packed arugula
- ¼ cup packed basil
- 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 cup finely grated parmesan
- 1⁄3 cup pine nuts
- 1 tbsp. lemon zest
- 1 clove garlic, chopped
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Process arugula, basil, oil, parmesan, pine nuts, lemon zest, garlic and salt in a food processor or blender until finely chopped; season with pepper, to taste.
- Serve over pasta, garnished with additional parmesan and cherry tomatoes, if desired.
- Viognier, which I chose, has a great lush texture with mild acidity – It pairs nicely with the bite of the arugula and the richness of the cheese. This Viognier was a part of a recent Club W shipment that I received – Great wines, at affordable prices, which are delivered right to your door! If you’re interested in signing up, use this link and they’ll hook you up with a FREE bottle!
- A ripe, full-bodied chardonnay will also fit the bill here. It’s creaminess is a great match for the bright flavors in the pesto.