Pic of Curly kale pesto

Curly kale pesto

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Curly kale pesto

Side Serves 2 15 min
You can make this pesto with raw or cooked kale. The raw version has more of a bitter, mineral taste, the cooked is sweeter but arguably less complex. You'll need more kale if you intend to cook it as it will need blanching, cooling and squeezing. This pesto is wonderful thrown in a pan with pasta, maybe accompanied by some roasted squash or fried mushrooms. Try adding a blob or two to a hearty stew as a garnish or to bruschetta with some cured meats or roasted tomatoes.


  • 100g kale/200g if cooking
  • 60g Parmesan
  • 60g toasted nuts (pine nuts, walnuts, hazelnuts or almonds)
  • 1 garlic clove
  • olive oil
  • 1 lemon


Prep time: 15 min
  • Step 1

    Strip the leaves from the kale, wash them well and discard the stalks. If cooking, blanch the kale in boiling water for 1 minute until wilted. Drain and cool in cold water. Squeeze dry with your hands.
  • Step 2

    Put the kale, Parmesan, nuts and garlic in a processor and pulse until finely chopped. Add olive oil until you achieve a thick pesto consistency. Season with salt, pepper and a dash or two of lemon juice to your tastes.

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