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Wild Garlic Pesto 2016

Wild Garlic Pesto 5.4.14 4

After a facebook reminder about a post three years ago about this I was asked for the recipe.  I really only follow recipes exactly when baking. Mostly I take guidance from a wide range of sources available (cook books, the internet, recipes passed on by friends and family) and then make it up with what I have to hand.

In this case Elizabeth David’s French Country Cooking (Penguin Books 1951)  talks about Pestou ( French variant one presumes) from around Nice, where there are two approaches to regular Pesto which is based on Basil.  (Pesto just means paste).

She says it’s crushed in a pestel and mortar with either butter and parmesan cheese, or made in a similar way with olive oil and pine nuts.  She’s not particular about proportions.

My second source this time around was A Handbook of Scotland’s Wild Harvests published by Saraband 2012, edited on behalf of Scottish Wild Harvests Association and Reforesting Scotland by Fy Martynoga.

We used mixed leaves of Allium triquestrum and Allium paradoxum  (three cornered leek and few-flowered leak respectively- alien species which arrived in South Scotland in the 1920’s and spread like wildfire. They were very similar to the natives they replaced). You could also use Ramsons – Allium ursinum (but they’re less common here).

Their recipe is for the proportions of:

85g/3oz wild garlic leaves; 50g/ 2oz hazelnuts; 50ml/2 tablespoons oilve oil; 25ml / 1 tablespoon lemon juice; A little salt sugar and pepper to taste; Nutmeg to taste.

I used 500gm of wild garlic 250gm of pine nuts and a handful of brazil nuts, pepper and olive oil and lemon juice sufficient to enable the liquidiser to work. having prechopped the garlic. You can do it all by hand if you want but with that quantity you might be there til Christmas.

Good luck wild food hunters!

 

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