Lettuce have some pesto!

I mentioned in my last post that I had an idea to use up any bitter lettuce you might have.

It dawned on me to use the lettuce as the base of pesto!  This is a wonderful way to make pesto when you don’t have an abundance of basil  plants or to make this in the winter, when fresh basil can be scarce.

 

Lettuce Pesto

 

A few handfuls of mixed lettuce, torn in to pieces

10 fresh basil leaves, torn

½ cup of olive oil

3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

1 tablespoon minced garlic or 3 cloves of garlic

Two tablespoons slivered almonds

1 teaspoon of dried basil

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 teaspoon dried parsley

Salt and pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in a food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Chill in the refrigerator for at least an hour.

Recipe yields approximately 1 and ¼ cups of pesto.

Variations

This is my favorite part, because I hate to make anything the same way twice. This would taste great with grated romano or asaigo cheeses. You could add fresh oregano and parsley. I used dried because my plants aren’t really that big. I think using spinach would be a nice addition, if not the sole leafy green you use. Feel free to use your wilted salad greens, too!  I used slivered almonds because that is what I had. I am sure you could use pine nuts or walnuts as well.  Have fun with it!

In case you were curious, I served the pesto on some sourdough Italian bread from local business, The Bakery at Conroy’s Organics.

Have a great day friends!  As always, keep cooking!

Lettuce begin.

Hello friends!  I have so much lettuce! Unfortunately it had decided to bolt.  I didn’t know what that meant, so I searched wikipedia and I found this definition:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lettuce#Description.

Apparently, bolting makes the leaves bitter.  My husband and father noticed the bitterness, but I haven’t.  To me, it tastes like arugula, which I love, even though it is bitter.

Because we have so much lettuce and I always feel guilty buying bottled salad dressing (unless it’s Annie’s Green Goddess or blue cheese dressing), I decided to whip up something while I was in my typical morning-running late-tizzy.

Mustard be in a Tizzy Dressing

 

-Store brand Dijon mustard (I use Hannaford brand.)
Badia Complete Seasoning
-Rice vinegar (I use Nakano Natural flavor.)

It should be noted, I threw this together and I didn’t measure anything. What I usually do is squirt some mustard in a small bowl and gradually add the vinegar until the mustard is thinned out to a consistency I like. I then add a few dashes of the Complete Seasoning. Also, if you have a sensitivity to or are anti MSG, be aware the Complete Seasoning contains MSG.

Now, I love salads, but what else can I do with this much lettuce? I can make a lettuce soup, which apparently makes good use of bolted lettuce. I have looked up a few recipes and I plan on knocking together something this week. I have also been blending the lettuces and the Swiss chard into my Green Smoothies. I also have a ton of raw broccoli left over from a party, so that has been going into my smoothies as well.

Besides these ideas, while writing this, I came up with a great idea to use up some of the plentiful lettuce…but I am not sure it will work, so keep your eyes peeled and if it works, I will blog about it.

Have a great day everyone, and keep cooking!