A quick post tonight…2 weeks ago in the CSA basket (literally at this point, as we’ve been picking up in a flexible laundry basket) we got a ton of arugula. We also have a bunch coming up in the garden. So...
Arugula in a salad? Excellent.
Arugula pesto? Oh baby.
This was just thrown together the same way we do our basil-based pesto. Dump the ingredients in the food processor and go. It seems to be quite impossible to overdose on any given ingredient. That goes for the garlic, the cheese, the nuts and the basil (in this case the arugula) – in fact, the only limitation seems to be the size of our Cuisinart bowl.
What? Food Processor? I’m sorry if you're one of the 67 enraged Italian Grandmothers flinging their mortars, pestles and soppressata at their computer monitors right now. This is how my mother taught me, and how it will always be done here.
What’s the best thing to do with arugula pesto? Sure, it’s up to you, but if you ask me, it goes on a pizza. We try to do a homemade pizza per week around here and I’ll be damned, but it’s one schedule that we seem to have no problem keeping on top of.
Here’s what went into the pesto:
- Several huge handfuls of arugula, stems below leaves removed (basically fill the food processor)
- Handful of walnuts
- Handful of pine nuts
- 6-8 garlic scapes (6 cloves is fine – we didn’t have any)
- 2 handfuls parmesan
- Salt and pepper
Turn on the food processor and drizzle olive oil in the top while it’s going. You’ll use a good amount of oil (1/2 cup?). Stop processing once it’s still a little chunky, but all brought together well.
Once it was made, it was slathered on stretched out pizza dough. Store bought is fine. Let it sit in the fridge for a few days to flavor up and get nice and gassy. Ha…moving on…if you want homemade, the very first recipe here, Molly’s basic bread, will also make a great pizza dough. Add some olive oil to it (along with the water) and if you can let it sit in the fridge for a couple days before using, that’s fantastic.
So, pesto down, torn chunks of soft/fresh mozzarella go on top, a couple halved grape tomatoes, a few spoons of leftover ricotta, a little oil and salt and into your oven at it’s hottest possible setting. I like to stretch it on parchment paper on the back of a sheet pan, and then slide it onto a baking stone.
If you want a nicely written up arugula pesto recipe, check out this one on Kalofagas. While you’re at it, make the rest of Peter's recipes too. We're doing his Kolokithokeftedes (zucchini fritters) tomorrow.
Yesterday in the CSA, we got 5 heads of assorted lettuces, collards (or kale), dandelion greens, herbs, a huge bunch of rainbow chard, and 4 lbs of cherries. All the non-lettuce greens were wilted down and packaged up. As I said, there's a pizza per week, and the chard and last weeks spinach went onto the pizza tonight. No photos...yet...but here are some of the veggies, and a little friend that made his escape on a dandelion leaf.