Chef Scott For Meatless Monday: Broccoli Pesto

Print Friendly and PDF Chef Scott For Meatless Monday: Broccoli Pesto

There are so many different recipes for pesto out there.

Traditionally, pesto is made with crushed pine nuts, garlic, basil, olive oil, and parmesan cheese - but, technically, ‘pesto’ simply refers to ‘anything that is made by pounding’ (?!).

Taking a cue from that generic definition, pesto recipes have been popping up for years - walnut pesto, mint leaf pesto, sun-dried tomato pesto. The list goes on.

Today, actor/chef extraordinaire, Chef Scott, has created a broccoli pesto with almonds and basil that is seriously pesto-licious. 

It’s bursting with fiber and antioxidants from the 3 heads of broccoli, and the almonds contain healthy fat to help lower your cholesterol.

I made this last night over some brown rice pasta, and it was filling - and fantastic. Enjoy!

Take It Away, Chef Scott…..

So…you made it through Thanksgiving and have just crossed the threshold into Holiday Land.

Or in my case, tech.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with the term “tech,” it’s the week before a play or a musical opens, when all of the fabulous production elements finally come together. Not only do the actors have to remember their lines, music, and choreography, they must do so while dealing with new costumes, lights, sound, and a band. And really long rehearsal days.

So now is the time to have a plan for a healthy and fast meal.

Broccoli Pesto is super-fast, super-filling, and super-tasty. And, this recipe makes a ton so you can nibble on it throughout your hectic week.

By the way…If you are in Chicago this holiday season, come see “We Three Liza’s” at the Steppenwolf Garage! I’m the one in purple.

Broccoli Pesto

Blanching the garlic mellows out that intense raw flavor while still snazzing up the broccoli. Mix it up with some quinoa, spread it on sandwiches, or thin it with a little bit of water and serve it over pasta.

3 heads broccoli

3 cloves garlic

1/2 cup almonds

4 Tbl olive oil

2 1/2 Tbl red wine vinegar

3/4 cup fresh basil

salt ‘n pepper

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cut broccoli into florets and chop stems into 1” chunks. Once the water boils, add broccoli, garlic, and almonds. Cook until broccoli is tender but still a vibrant green, about 5-7 minutes.

Drain broccoli and reserve 1/3 of the florets, placing them in an ice bath to shock the veggies and stop the cooking process.

Place remaining broccoli, garlic, red wine vinegar, and almonds in a food processor with basil and 1/4 cup water. Puree mixture until relatively smooth, adding just enough oil to help things along. This may have to happen in batches. Adjust seasoning to taste.

Pesto will keep in the refrigerator covered for five days.