Friday, September 12, 2014

Radish and Carrot Greens Pesto

Radish and Carrot Greens Pesto
Ever wondered if you could eat the tops of carrots?  I never had until this year when I had a big garden bed packed with too many carrots, so many in fact that I had to keep pulling out tiny ones in order to make room for some of them to actually grow full size.  (Next year I will be a little less liberal with my seed spreading). Every time I pulled up a bunch of mini carrots, too small to properly peel and eat, I wondered if the greens themselves were any good (and safe) to eat.  So finally I looked it up.  Turns out they are good for you, full of the same nutrients as those found in the roots, (the carrot). I only thought to look this up because I also recently planted a fall crop of radishes and as I saw them start to grow I remembered that I had tried planting them a few years ago and for whatever reason I never seem to get more than a thick red stem attached to a bunch of green leaves (no real radish to speak of). So until I figure out what it is I am doing wrong as a gardener, I figured I would find out if you could just eat the radish greens.  And like carrots, you can!  The carrot greens should be used more like you would an herb such as parsley since they have a fairly strong earthy flavor, but the radish greens, besides being a bit spicy like arugula, would even make a nice salad.  But I didn't actually pick enough for that this time because washing tiny little leaves that are often covered with a lot of dirt is not fun.  I did have enough of both however to make this tasty, unexpectedly flavored pesto.  I love using pistachios for pesto since they are one of my favorite nuts and I always have them around, and the rest of the ingredients are pretty basic.  Paired with a meal of Mini Baked Eggplant Parmesan using locally grown organic eggplants and my very own tomatoes, it was a delicious meal highlighting some of the best food the earth has to offer this time of year!

Radish and Carrot Greens Pesto

1 C. radish and carrot greens
1/2 C. shelled pistachios
1/4 C. extra virgin olive oil
1 clove of garlic
1/2 lemon, juiced
roasted pistachios, for garnish
Parmesan cheese, optional

Combine all of the ingredients in a food processor and blend until mixed thoroughly.  Serve immediately or store in the refrigerator.

ready to blend

all mixed together

spread on toast with shelled pistachios for garnish

with a little parmesan on top

served with Mini Baked Eggplant Parmesan for dinner!

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