I remember the first time I tried avocado: a shop assistant of a supermarket welcomed the clients with a tray full of pieces of beautiful green plain avocado prepared with toothpicks. Well, I did not find them really tasty and texture not really “special”.
Only a few years later, while travelling, I discovered how good avocados are transformed into guacamole and other sauces.
For this recipe I decided to blend together green ingredients and create a new pesto and try to take an almost monochromatic photo without forgetting the main purpose of the recipe: good food!
The main green ingredients are avocado, wild garlic and pistachio, but in this recipe we have more green ones because I also added olive oil, green chili, green peppercorns and lime zest.
I allowed only two exceptions, two white ingredients which don’t affect the color, but will enhance it by the taste, structure and make this sauce even more delectable: salt and Parmesan cheese.
Wild garlic (Allium ursinum, Bear’s garlic, or Bärlauch in German) is a wonderful chive cousin and is a very popular European species of garlic. Wild garlic pesto can be used as alternative to basil pesto as addition to pasta, tomato sauces and much more. Pick up the leaves before it had bloomed as apparently the leaves get really bitter after that point. Wild garlic can be confused with Lily of the Valley, autumn crocus and arum which are poisonous. If you have any doubt about your plant, do not eat it. The easiest way to tell if you have wild garlic or not is just to pick a small bit of leaf and rub it between your fingers. In the USA, ramp (Allium tricoccum), a wild plant with more onion-like flavor, is used for similar purposes.
If you don’t have wild garlic, use garlic chives or green garlic leaves, I would add few basil leaves as well; it’s not the same but a variation!
Avocado, Wild Garlic and Pistachio Pesto
- 1 avocados (quantity depends on the size)
- 40 wild garlic leaves, cut with scissors into 1-2 cm pieces
- 1 green chili, seeded and chopped (or quantity to taste)
- 1 teaspoon preserved green peppercorns (in brine)
- 1/2 lime zest
- 1/2 lime juice
- 1/2 teaspoon salt, to taste
- ¼ cup olive oil, to taste
- 400-500 g pasta, your favorite, cooked al dente
Topping to serve
- 4 tablespoons pistachio, peeled and roughly chopped
- 4 teaspoons olive oil
- Parmesan cheese, grated to taste
- Lime slices as desired
- Combine all the ingredients for the pesto in a food processor and pulse until smooth and almost creamy. If necessary add little olive oil.
- Cook your favorite pasta in hot salted water, staring add little olive oil and place in a big bowls.
- Immediately add pesto, stir until well combined.
- To serve top with pistachios, drizzle some olive oil and sprinkle some fresh grated Parmesan.
- Serve with lime slices if desired.