Wild garlic pesto

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Now is the glorious season of wild garlic and, while on holiday in Pembrokeshire last week, woods filled  with the scent of garlic and ethereal swathes of lovely white flowers made me think of Wild Garlic Pesto.  Research in the limited selection of cookbooks available, led me to invent my own recipe. This is it below.  At the time, I had a few leftover salted almonds to use up, so I added those too.  In the absence of a food processor, I scissored up the garlic – but Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall said a pestle and mortar was preferred. Joy FitzSimmons


Serves 3

  • 2 or 3 handfuls of young garlic leaves, washed (around 100g)
  • 10 salted almonds, or available nuts of choice, finely chopped (opt)
  • 2-3 tblsp extra virgin olive oil
  • pinch of sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • enough spaghetti for 3 people
  • 2 tblsp parmesan, finely grated plus extra for sprinkling

Scissor the green garlic leaves, in small bunches at a time, into fine strips into a bowl. Add the finely chopped nuts and pour in the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and stir  so that the leaves and nuts are well-coated with the oil. Leave to marinade  in the fridge for up to 24 hours but bring back to room temperature before using. Cook spaghetti according to packet instructions, drain and return to pan. Stir in the finely grated parmesan and add the pesto. Stir well and gently heat through. Serve immediately, adding more parmesan as required.

You can also use wild garlic pesto on potatoes, green beans, on top of a piece of poached salmon or with fishcakes


For details of Joy FitzSimmons’s range of cards, notebooks and pictures featuring dachshunds visit www.londonpooch.co.uk