Jane Somper, from Goldhill Organics Farm (www.goldhillorganics.co.uk) called me asking if I would like to write some recipes using their in season vegetables, to be published in the May issue of ‘Dorset’ Magazine (www.dorsetmagazine.co.uk). Obviously I jumped at the opportunity!! Feeling excited was an understatement and I was raring to go.
The list I was given included – Potato, Garlic, Spinach and Sugar Snaps (to mention but a few).
I love spinach and add it to almost everything I cook, so this was going to form the basis for my first recipe. After much ‘uhhming’ and ‘ahhhing’ I recalled a side dish/accompaniment from Sri Lanka called a Gotukola (scientific name – Centella Asiatica) Mallung (meaning a dish made from uncooked greens). I LOVE gotukola mallung and this gave me the idea of trying a Spinach Curry Pesto.
I’ve made pesto before but never with spinach and thought this might just be close enough to give that same fresh taste and flavour that you get when eating a mouthful of gotukola.
A truly delicious and versatile little dish that is quick and easy to make. It is suitable for vegans & vegetarians and being dairy/gluten free it’s a handy recipe to have at the ready for any occasion. Fresh, raw and chunky Spinach Curry Pesto was made and here’s how to do it.
Let’s Get Preparing
Makes – approx 400g
Preparation Time – 10-15 minutes
‘Cooking Time’ – 5 minutes
250g Spinach (washed, de-stemmed and fully dried)
3-4 garlic cloves (can add more for a more garlicy flavour)
100g plain cashew nuts
1/2 tsp Sri Lankan turmeric powder
1 tsp Sri Lankan coriander powder
75-100ml Olive Oil (I used my tasty oil from www.fineoilsandingredients.com)
Sea Salt to taste
Time to get preparing - Prepare and measure out all your ingredients. Wash, de-stem and thoroughly dry the spinach leaves. I place them between 2 clean tea towels and then dab off any excess with kitchen roll. Place all the ingredients into a food processor and process for 2 – 3 minutes, Check the consistency of the pesto, adding more olive oil and salt if required. I like my pesto somewhat chunky so only blitz it for about 3 minutes but if you want a smoother texture run it through for longer.
Once you’ve got the required consistency of your pesto, your done. You can now bottle it up and store in the fridge. Will keep for 4 – 6 weeks this way unless your household is like ours and then it will only last about 2 – 3 days!!
Optional but Super Tasty - For an alternative taste you could replace the cashew nuts with either walnuts, pine nuts or sunflower seeds
You can also add 50g grated parmesan cheese to the pesto for something a little different.
If spinach isn’t your thing, you could try using blanched & mashed peas instead.
Top Tips – Add the olive oil & salt gradually as you can always add more at the end. Store in a glass container and ensure the top of the pesto is covered with a layer of oil to prevent discolouration.