We’ve had arugula coming out of our ears lately… here’s a fun new way to use it! I mostly followed the Elise’s instructions from SimplyRecipes, except I made four times as much (which was at least twice as much as the seven people who ended up eating could devour — I’ve given the original amounts below), didn’t bother removing the stems, used raw garlic and walnuts rather than toasting them, and used summer squash in place of the cheese, as described in an earlier pesto recipe. Would like to try roasting the garlic next time, to avoid the indigestion pesto always gives me, but we were too pressed for time today. Coursely chopping the garlic and frying it in a pan might do the trick in a pinch. I found the pesto much too oily, perhaps because of the extra liquid from the squash, so I have cut the amount of oil in half in the recipe below, as I did with the final batch and liked the consistency better. This can be adjusted to your liking, of course.
2 cups arugula (remove stems if you want, and especially any particularly tough stalks if using overgrown arugula)
1/2 cup walnuts (I’ve also used sunflower seeds, not quite as good in my opinion but work alright, toasting helps add more depth of flavor)
1/2 cup parmesan cheese or summer squash, cubed
1/4 cup olive oil (or up to 1/2 cup if using cheese)
6-8 roasted or sautéed garlic cloves (or 3 raw)
1/2 to 1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
A teaspoon or so smoked paprika or chili powder (optional)
In a food processor, finely mince arugula, garlic, walnuts. Add cheese or squash and briefly run blade to mix in. While the blade is still running, slowly pour in oil to make a thick, creamy paste. Blend in seasoning to taste. Thin with a little hot water just before using if necessary.