I found a neat looking recipe for some broccoli and mint pesto a few days ago and noticed that the photo used in the recipe was that of the pesto on top of some spaghetti. I found the image appealing, so I thought I’d try to imitate what was going on in it. I’ve never actually tried broccoli pesto before, so I had no idea what I was in for. To my surprise, I was very pleased with the final result. As it turns out, broccoli pesto is extremely tasty and fun to eat.
I encourage you to make some of this pesto at least once in your life. I think you’ll find it a quick and easy process and hey, you never know, it might become a favorite for you. When regular old tomato sauce becomes tiresome and boring on top of your pasta, you could just as easily go the pesto route. This is what I’m likely to do in the future. I’d like to jump back and forth between the two.
The first thing I thought after I tasted this pesto was how fresh it tasted. It really did. For some reason, broccoli, mixed up with mint and olive oil tastes “fresh.” It’s difficult to explain, but it’s true. I can tell you that the pesto is delicious though. It’s also got some garlic and pecans mixed in with everything, so really, the taste is outstanding. If you’re a pesto fan, you’ll enjoy this one.
Makes: 2 3/4 Cups
1 Pound Dried Spaghetti
1 Small Head of Fresh Broccoli, Cut into Florets
1/2 Cup Pecans, Crushed and Toasted
3 Teaspoons Garlic, Chopped
1 Cup Fresh Mint Leaves
2 Cups Fresh Parsley
1 Cup Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 Cup Parmesan Cheese, Grated
I’d like to thank Hannaford for this recipe. I pulled it from their Fresh publication, which has proven to be a valuable resource for some very good recipes.
Blanch the Broccoli
Fill a large pot about half way with water and add 1 tablespoon of salt to it. Then, bring the water to a boil over high heat. When the water is boiling, add the broccoli to the pot and let it blanch for five minutes. When finished, strain the water from the pot and then fill the pot with cold water to stop the broccoli from cooking any further. After a few minutes, strain the broccoli in a colander.
Make the Pesto
Add the broccoli, 1/4 cup of the toasted pecans, garlic, mint, parsley, one teaspoon salt and 3/4 cup of olive oil to a food processor. Run the processor for about ten seconds until the ingredients are broken down. Then, add in the Parmesan cheese and pulse a few times until it’s mixed in with everything else.
When finished, transfer from the food processor to a bowl.
Cook the Spaghetti
Add four quarts of water to a large pot, along with one tablespoon of salt. Bring the water to a boil over high heat and then add the spaghetti. Let cook for ten or so minutes until the spaghetti is al dente. Reserve 1 cup of pasta water. When the pasta is ready, turn off the heat and strain the spaghetti through a colander and then place it back in the pot.
Add the remaining 1/4 cup of olive oil to the spaghetti and mix well. Then, add half the pesto to the spaghetti and mix well. You should have some nice pesto covered pasta. If it’s too thick, you can add some of the reserved water to loosen things up.
Plate & Serve
Divide the pasta between plates. Add some of the remaining pesto to each plate and then sprinkle the remaining pecans over each plate as well. Serve and enjoy!
The Final Spaghetti & Pasta Dish
I loved this dinner. I’m totally going to make it again. If you have trouble with the consistency of either the pesto or the pasta, just add water, tablespoon by tablespoon. That should give you good results. Otherwise, this is a fairly straightforward recipe to prepare. If you do decide to give this one a shot, please let me know your thoughts in the comment section below. Thanks for reading!