In this flavorful pesto recipe by chef Frank McClelland, spring peas and mint combine with the heady flavors of cayenne and garlic to create a mixture that’s both bright and bold. Add this to a pasta salad to make it the biggest hit of the picnic or backyard barbecue. Hit up your local farmer’s market for super fresh (and local) spring peas (or, grab some from the freezer aisle at the grocery store – we won’t tell).
- 1 cup fresh or frozen peas, blanched
- 1/2 cup fresh mint leaves
- 1 tablespoon white onion, finely chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons chicken or vegetable broth
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Combine the peas, mint, onion, garlic, oil, broth, cayenne, salt and pepper in a blender and puree until you have a pourable consistency.
- If the mixture is too thick, add more broth, one tablespoon at a time, and puree again.
- Keep chilled in an airtight container. The pesto will be fresh for about a week.
- Add the pesto, starting with small amounts and tasting for flavor, to chilled pasta. Additional fresh vegetables can be added to give the salad a bit more crunch. Some separation may occur during storage, so be sure to stir before serving.