Pesto is another one of those staples in my house. Spreading it on crackers and sandwiches is delicious and a dollop on some pasta makes for a quick weeknight meal. You can buy pesto in jars at the store and many grocery stores have a good version made in-store, but nothing beats making it at home. Pesto is a great way to use up a ton of basil and can be frozen in ice cube trays to be used throughout the year. However, this recipe is not for your average basil pesto. Instead, I use mostly kale along with your average pesto ingredients: garlic, olive oil, pine nuts, you know the drill. I do like to add some basil because I love the flavor along with the kale. This pesto is so versatile and delicious. I hope you try it out and let me know what you used it for!
Makes about 3/4 cup pesto
2 cups tightly packed kale leaves
1 cup packed basil leaves
3 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons pine nuts
½ cup olive oil
¼ cup parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
Pulse together the kale, basil, garlic, and pine nuts in a food processor. Fill a measuring cup with ½ cup of olive oil. With the food processor on, slowly pour in oil until the mixture is smooth and thoroughly combined, scraping down the sides as needed. You may not use all of the oil depending on how thick or thin you like your pesto.
Remove the mixture from the food processor and into a small bowl. Stir in the cheese and season with salt and pepper to taste. Refrigerate until use.
If you plan on using the pesto for pasta, I recommend reserving a bit of the pasta water. Adding a bit of water along with the pesto helps everything incorporate into a smooth sauce and gets rid of those pesky lumps of pesto.