Sunday, March 24, 2019

Broccoli, Blue Cheese and Walnut Pesto – You don’t know what you’re missing George!

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This dish was inspired by former President of the United States, George W Bush, who had this to say about a much maligned vegetable: “I do not like broccoli. And I haven't liked it since I was a little kid and my mother made me eat it. And I'm President of the United States and I'm not going to eat any more broccoli.” So there!

Well, George, I didn’t like broccoli either. I didn’t like it when I was a little kid and my mother grew it and made me eat it. While we could coax the cat to eat most things our finicky palates rejected, it could not be persuaded to hoover up our unwanted broccoli and so we had to suffer it. Now I’m a grown up, I actually love broccoli.

It takes mere minutes to turn what could be a so-so side dish into the main attraction. George, you don’t know what you are missing!

A delicious meal in minutes - hey pesto!

For 4 – 6 servings of pesto you will need...
125g broccoli, broken into florets
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
50g walnuts, toasted in a dry frying pan over a low heat
50g mild blue cheese such as Cashel Blue, or Bleu d'Auvergne
5 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh chives
¼ tablespoon freshly ground black pepper 

1                    Cook the broccoli in boiling salted water for about 6 minutes until just tender. A knife should easily pierce the stems when cooked. Remove from the heat, drain and stir in the crushed garlic. Leave to cool.
2                    When the broccoli has cooled, place it in a food processor along with all the other ingredients. Process until you have a smooth, slightly grainy paste. And that’s it – hey pesto! (I haven't specified salt in the ingredient list as the cheese can be quite salty so taste the mixture and only add salt if necessary.) This will keep, covered, in the fridge for 3 or 4 days.

To serve, simply prepare tagliatelle or other pasta according to the instructions on the packet. When cooked, drain and return to the cooking pot along with 2 – 3 tablespoons of the pesto per person. Toss the pasta so that it is coated with the pesto. Serve immediately.

The End!

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  1. This actually looks quite good even though I am not a huge fan of blue cheese! But paired with the broc and walnut I'm sure its excellent.

  2. What a creative use for broccoli. Anything with blue cheese in it tops my list. I can't buy the stuff. I'll open the container and eat the whole thing before it ever makes it to the table.

  3. I have never eaten broccoli like this it looks delish :)

    Choc Chip Uru

  4. Looks and sounds like an amazing pesto! I will definitely give this a try, thanks for sharing :)

    Happy Blogging!
    Happy Valley Chow

  5. I didn't like eating broccoli when I was growing up and loved it when I became an adult. I guess our buds mature with us. Would love to try your recipe. It looks delicious with the pasta. Have a great week, Hester! :)

  6. Okay it may sounds like a strange kid, but I loved broccoli from young age...and my kids love them too. What's wrong with us?! :D

    So this is perfect for us... but only problem is blue cheese. No one of us is a big fan. But since you insist, we should give it a try! ;) Looks delicious. With pasta and broccoli, blue cheese may be not an issue! :D

  7. Hester, I have made different pestos before but never one with broccoli - it sounds like a terrific idea. When I read your recipe I was happy to see that you add the crushed garlic cloves to the steamed broccoli, I am sure that will take off some of the raw garlic taste that other pesto recipes often have . I will try this recipe for sure and I am certain that the family will love it (the kids actaully adore broccoli). Thanks for posting this wonderful recipe!
    Have a wonderful week!

  8. @ Nami - it's great that you and your kids have loved broccoli from a young age. Think of all the years I've missed!

  9. I've always loved broccoli--call me crazy! What a great use for it, and one I never would have thought to do.

  10. this looks great! I love this idea for using broccoli!

  11. hahaha. I loved broccoli as a kid and still do. I remember when Bush made that announcement and turned to my mom horrified and said "But why???"

    This looks so good. I really need to get into the alternative pesto game.

  12. This pesto is a terrific way to eat the greens moi is not so fond off, but with my favourite cheese in the mix, I could get tempted!

  13. I like broccoli. And this pesto looks really good and yummy!!!

  14. Thanks for this one Hester - fantastic way to tackle the 5 a day!!

  15. Sounds like a great way to sneak in some of that healthy broccoli! If you like a stronger blue flavor you could also try a Danablu, such as Castello


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