The Strawberry Tree’s Wild Garlic Pesto

March is here and apparently, Spring has sprung…well maybe! It’s all still a bit haphazard at the moment. Our native Wild greens seem to be much more resilient than the crops we raise…we’ve been out picking the young wild sorrels, both sheep and wood, the herb robert, the fresh sea beets and so much more.

However, it’s the wild garlic that provides us with the first real taste of Spring! This is a big harvest, as big as the elderflower, and as big as the bilberry. We harvest enough to provide every table in The Strawberry Tree with this taste of Spring throughout the year. The kitchens are heady with the scent of wild garlic at the moment and its making cameo appearances all over our menu. Here’s our recipe for our famous wild garlic pesto…enjoy!

WHAT GOES IN

50g Fresh Wild Garlic Leaves

25g Pine, Cashew, Hazel or Chestnuts…your choice!

200ml Organic Olive Oil or better still Irish Organic Rapeseed Oil

40g grated, Parmigiano-Reggiano or really mature Desmond

Organic Black Pepper and Sea Salt.

HOW IT GOES

Simple recipes are not always the easiest. It’s taken us years to get this just right. Any of the above Nuts, Oils or Cheeses will make a fabulous fresh spring tasting Pesto…we’re just not saying exactly which go into our Strawberry Tree Wild Garlic Pesto!

So, the easy way is to blitz the nuts and half the oil in a food processor and add in the grated cheese. Then add the wild garlic and blitz with the remaining oil to the right consistency. Then simply season, to your taste. As a fresh Oil Dressing, it’ll work, every time.

HOW TO FINISH

Pour into sterilised Kilner Jars and keep in the fridge or a really cool, dark pantry. Pesto is a fresh product, use within three weeks..if you can make it last that long!

WHAT YOU GET

Is a serious Pesto; a deep dark green Pesto with attitude, a Pesto that will slap you in the face with the unmistakably strong taste of wild natural garlic and its lush woodland dwellings. What you also get is ‘bottled spring and summer’…to give as a present to your friends. If not, use it to impress as a dressing over salads, bake into your favourite bread dough, add to any pasta dish or mix with butter and slip under the skin of a chicken roast…the list goes on, just use your imagination and go Wild!

Recipe: Evan Doyle, Tim Daly, The Strawberry Tree Restaurant, 2013 

Photo’s: courtesy of Evan Doyle 

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