Raw Asparagus Pesto

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With an 8 1/2 week old puppy scampering through the house needing to be let outside every 15 minutes for potty training, not much time has been left for me to be in the kitchen this week.  I needed something quick with little to no cooking.  I also wanted something that would take advantage of the seasonal produce at the market.  I hit both marks (not to mention excellent taste and nutrition) with this recipe!

The asparagus is processed raw, so no cooking is required.  I used sliced almonds instead of pine nuts and fresh flat-leaf parsley for a lemony note. One of the great things about pesto is the versatility factor.  This raw asparagus pesto is a shining example.  You can toss it with hot pasta for a quick weeknight meal, slather it on a crostini for a light snack or appetizer, or use it as a sandwich spread.  My favorite way to enjoy this vegetable condiment is to toast a slice of country bread, spread on a nice layer of pesto, top with thinly sliced ham and some Gruy√®re cheese, then place a perfectly poached egg right on top.  Grab your knife and fork and dig in!

Oh and the score factor-- it is a great way to sneak a vegetable into a child's diet ☺.
Printable Recipe

Raw Asparagus Pesto
makes about 1 1/2 cups

Use as a sandwich spread, toss with hot pasta, or slather on a crostini.

12 ounces asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup sliced almonds, lightly toasted
1 Tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

In the bowl of a food processor, process all the ingredients into a thick consistency.  Season to taste with more salt and pepper if needed.  Pesto can be refrigerated in an airtight container with a sheet of plastic wrap pressed directly onto the surface for up to 1 week.  Enjoy!

Source: Adapted from Fine Cooking, April/May 2012


  1. A new puppy? Wow! You're brave.

    I've been wanting to try this and I love your substitutions. Best of all is your ham and poached egg creation. That sounds wonderful.

    1. A husband, three kids, and a big dog...what's one more mouth to feed and furry body to take up space on my floor? I love it!

      Do hope you give the pesto a go:)

  2. As I read your entry I thought of a beautiful luncheon we shared on your patio a few years ago. It was a perfect day. You served shaved asparagus nests with a light vinaigrette and a poached egg on top. The table was set with flowers and blue and white linens and was just big enough for the two of us. Miss you!

  3. Love experimenting with healthy green pestos-my kids love them too! I would have never thought of asparagus. What a fabulous idea! :)
    Here's my fave creation:


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