Alright, I know that I’ve posted a pesto recipe before. But this one is different because I used hazelnuts! Plus I fiddled with the ratios on this one to get a more standardized version. If you’ve made a pesto before, you understand how easy making this can be. But you also understand how important it is to use high quality ingredients. If anything you use is of a lesser quality, you will definitely notice it.
Now using hazelnuts in this recipe can be slightly problematic, since they do have those pesky husks on them (I am not sure that terminology is right). It does take some effort to get those things off, but I think it’s worth it. This recipe makes a big batch. Here’s what you’ll need:
- 3/4 c. hazelnuts
- 5 c. fresh basil leaves, packed tight
- 5-6 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 c. olive oil
- juice and zest of 1/2 a lemon
- 1 c. grated Parmesan
- salt and pepper, to taste
1. Roast the hazelnuts in either a preheated 350 degree F oven or in a pan over medium heat. Roast them until they become fragrant and slightly browned. Transfer them to a plate and cover with a light towel and allow them to cool. While they are covered they can steam which helps release them from the husks. Now rub the nuts with the towel to clean off husks and set aside.
2. In a food processor, place hazelnuts and pulse to chop for a few seconds. Add the basil and pulse again. Do the same when you add the garlic.
3. With the food processor running. drizzle in the olive oil to combine. Add the lemon and pulse for a few seconds. Transfer to a serving bowl or storage container. Stir in the Parmesan. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Notes — I made a batch of Garlic Confit and added a little bit of the infused oil into the pesto. I didn’t put too much because I just wanted a hint of the flavor. Maybe I used a couple of tablespoons. . . I like putting lemon in my pestos which most people don’t. Maybe it makes it too much like a gremolata for folks. I just like the brightness it adds, plus it helps keep everything green. . . Roasting hazelnuts is made more idiot-proof because of their husks. The husks help protect the nuts from burning so even if you get a little charring on the husk, the nut may actually be just fine.
It’s an exciting day here in the Kitchen! Well, actually I’m in the dining room, but that’s beside the point. It’s Friday and the start of the weekend (a long Labor Day Weekend mind you)! And what’s a better way to start the weekend than with a little fun! Of course, since this is Jereme’s Kitchen, why not focus on food? Now I’ve done a couple of posts like this before (and I’ll probably show some of those again), but it was sporadic at best. This time I’ll do my utmost to make this a regular feature.
These are just some things that I’ve found perusing the Interwebs or that have been sent to me because folks thought I could appreciate them. So I thought that I’d share this goodness with my faithful readers. Maybe you’ll find a bit of yourselves in these posts. Enjoy!
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Beets. Now who doesn’t like beets? Actually, I didn’t for the longest time (skip this if you already know this story🙂 ). The taste was odd to me — kinda like an earthier carrot. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. But it just seemed weird. Maybe it’s because I wasn’t exposed to them as a child. Actually I don’t think Brooklyn had any beets at the time. Sure, that’s probably not accurate and my memory is somewhat foggy. After all, I was only like five years old at the time and that was like 100 years ago.
But I digress… This I served as a side, but it is easy to turn this into a full vegetarian course. And again, this is hard for me to quantify because I grilled some beets and served it with a handful of greens and topped it with some feta so ingredients are just a guestimation. This is easy-peasy lemon-squeezy; here’s kinda what you need:
- 1 beet, sliced about 1/4″ thick
- vegetable oil, for brushing the beets
- 1 c. micro greens or baby greens (I used daikon and chard)
- 1/4 c. feta, crumbled
- salt and pepper, to taste
- salad dressing, to taste
1. Prepare your grill, as needed (again, I use hardwood charcoal). Brush the beets with the vegetable oil on both sides. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
2. Grill the beets until tender over direct heat, about 2-3 minutes a side. Remove from the heat to cool slightly. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, lightly dress the greens
3. Arrange the beets on the plate. Top with the dressed greens. Sprinkle with the feta crumbles. Add salt and pepper if you like.
Notes — for the dressing, I just drizzled some olive oil and lemon juice on top of the greens to dress them
Corn, a grill, and compound butter. How can that combination be wrong? I love grilling corn and I’m on the side of the spectrum that grills the corn without the husks on. In my opinion, if you grill with the husks on you’re really not grilling the corn but steaming it. I, for one, like a nice, smoky char. And I like nice, simple, summer recipes. You can’t get much simpler than this — corn, butter, radishes. That’s essentially all you need. I just add some herbs for some additional flavor (just some basil and parsley, but use whatever you want).
I would serve this as a side, but it is easy to get full from this because you can get carried away. Here’s what you need:
- 1 stick of butter, softened
- 1 -2 radishes, chopped
- chopped herbs, to taste
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 6 – 8 ears of corn, husks removed
- vegetable oil
1. Prepare your grill (I use charcoal). Meanwhile, combine the butter, radishes, herbs, salt, & pepper in a bowl. Set aside.
2. Brush the corn with the oil and place on the grill over direct heat. Grill until nicely browned, about 8 – 10 minutes. Turn the ears as needed to cook evenly. Transfer to a serving plate.
3. After the corn is removed from the grill, brush with the radish butter. Sprinkle on a little salt & pepper if you like and serve.
Notes — You can bush the radish butter on the corn while it’s on the grill, but I’d wait until the last couple of minutes because the radishes could burn. . . You can keep the husks on. Peel them back and tie them to make a handle. Just keep the husks off the heat — hang them over the edge of the grill. . . Make some extra radish butter — it’s great on a nice toasty baguette!
I had a whole lot of kale to use I was thinking how could I make this without having to make kale chips. When I made this, it was unseasonably hot here in SE Michigan (and 85 degrees F is very hot for that time of year — I think it was in March) and I didn’t want to turn my oven on unless I really really had to. So I saw the title of a post for a Killer Kale Pesto and wanted to give my take a shot. I didn’t want to go to the grocery so I wanted to use what I had already. Lucky for me I had everything I needed. And I was surprised at some of the similarities between what was in the recipe and what I had in my freezer.
Some of you may already know, making things like pesto are very organic and free form for me. I really don’t have specifics here since I go by feel and what the pesto looks like. And with this one, I really like the tarragon in here. It adds a nice subtle twist. And the toasted pecans give a nice butteriness. Here’s what you need:
- 1/2 c. toasted pepitas
- 1 c. toasted pecans
- 1 bunch kale
- 1/2 bunch parsley
- 4-5 sprigs tarragon
- juice of 1 lemon
- 2-3 cloves garlic, chopped
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 c. olive oil
- 1/4 c. grated parmesan
1. Place the nuts in the food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Cut the stems from the kale and cut the spine out of the leaves. Coarsely chop and place in the food processor. Do the same for the parsley. Strip the leaves from the tarragon and place in the food processor as well.
2. Add the salt, pepper, garlic, lemon juice, and the olive oil. Process until smooth. Fold in the parmesan. Can last about a week in the refrigerator. You can freeze them in an ice cube tray to have quick portions of pesto that you can just add to warm pastas and such.
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