Sunday, June 14, 2015

Broccoli Pesto on Grilled Naan with Melted Manchego

A client of mine loves talking food with me.  We actually probably have too much fun tossing around ideas and telling stories of things we've tried.  She told me how she made a broccoli pesto once, and being the pesto lover I am, I couldn't believe I hadn't tried that?!  Pesto claims no rules right? Anything green with garlic and olive oil?  I sought out to try it.

Broccoli Pesto

3 cups worth of broccoli florets, washed thoroughly
1 cup olive oil
1/2 cup pine nuts
3-4 cloves garlic
salt and pepper

Here's the secret to the color and the creaminess:  BLANCHING.  If you are new to cooking this is a simple process that is highly helpful in learning vegetables.  By cooking a veggie or green quickly in boiling water (greens as quick as 30 seconds, broccoli up to 2-3 min) and then "shocking them" right into a bowl of ice water, it seals their color!  This is so helpful with herbs, pestos, or if you are looking to take the raw edge off of veggies you want to serve with dip in the summer.  I think the vegetable I do this most with is asparagus.  They are ready to go in salads, with hummus... okay okay, back to the process!

So, florets into boiling water for 2-3 min.  Then fish them out with a spider or slotted spoon and throw them into ICE COLD water.  As in, yes, there should be ice floating on top.  If you have a sore foot or hand, go ahead and ice that too.  Maybe I love blanching because it brings me back to athletic training rehab... young athletes trying to convince me that it was cold enough.  I don't think so buddy... if you're man enough to put those shoulder pads on, you are man enough to ice bath, with cubes floating!  I really am a nice trainer... I promise. Ha.

Then into the food processor with the other ingredients.  I like to pulse the nuts and garlic together first, then add broccoli, and sloooooooowly add the oil, then lastly salt/pepper.  Then taste.

I was SO pleased with how creamy this pesto was!  I honestly was going to add the Parmesan cheese (as traditional) but decided it didn't even need it!  Truly, this pesto was so great and simple.  I even snuck it onto some pasta for my son... little did he know that little sauce was actually healthy.

This is my sweet friend Kyle helping out Chris at the grill.  She is a one of a kind person.  I won't compare her to the pesto, because she would win, but you get the idea...

Since we had friends coming over to grill, I decided to make the pesto a main attraction!  We grilled one side of the already cooked naan flat bread for about 2 min, then immediately spread the pesto and topped it with Manchego cheese.  It's what I had and I thought it would be light and fun.  Then back onto the grill for a couple more minutes to melt the cheese.

I had originally planned to serve them sliced, but we were all a little too hungry I guess.   I wasn't about to argue.

Good thing I was able to snap a few photos before they were consumed!

Hope your summer grilling it going well!  We are cranking it out nearly every night because 100 is just too hot to cook inside.  But when meals look like this, I'll take 100 degrees.

1 comment:

  1. that looks DElicious Noellita! I want to try every recipe you blog!