We all know pesto; One of Italy kitchen’s stars originally coming from the Ligurian cuisine with endless variations.
And here is an idea; Instead of serving it on pasta, try roasting some winter root vegetables dressed with freshly made pesto for an original and yet simple dish.
You will need
For the pesto:
240ml extra virgin olive oil
40g fresh basil leaves
½ teaspoon sea salt
20g pine nuts
2 small garlic cloves
20g parmesan cheese, grated
20g pecorino cheese, grated
For the Vegetables:
1 Parsnips or parsley root
1 small Sweet potato
1 Kohlrabi or turnip
1/2 a small pumpkin or squash
To prepare the pesto, put all ingredients in a food processor or a blender container and whiz to a smooth paste.
Wash, peel* and cut all vegetables to bite size chunks, making sure they are all more or less same size as you want them to cook evenly. Put them all in a steamer and steam till they are just about soft, but not mushy!
Transfer the cooked vegetable to a large bowl, add 3-4 generous spoons of pesto and some extra olive oil if you like, toss the vegetables so they are all well coated with the pesto.
Arrange the vegetables nicely in a shallow baking dish and bake in a preheated oven on high temperature (230°c) for 20-30 minutes till the vegetables are starting to brown and crisp at the top. You can serve the dish with some extra pesto in a separate small bowl for the diners to top up their vegetables if they like.
Tip 1: Sweet potatoes and squash- you can leave the skin on, just scrub well.
Tip 2: Any left pesto can be stored in the fridge, for few days in an air tight container covered with a thin layer of olive oil to prevent it from browning.