OREGANO/HAZELNUT PESTO

One idea for lots of fresh oregano…
Ingredients —
  • 15 hazelnuts, toasted
  • 1 cup (packed) fresh oregano, washed, and chopped
  • Pinch salt
  • 3 large garlic cloves, chopped – use your wild garlic!
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons shredded parmesan cheese
  • 8 ounces fettuccine (uncooked weight) or pasta of choice
  • Optional garnish: fresh oregano leaves, chopped tomato

Method —

1. While pasta is cooking in salted water….

2. Toast hazelnuts in a dry saute pan on medium heat, stirring constantly until they are browned. Remove immediately. Using a hand-chopper, pulse until very fine.

3. Add the oregano, salt and garlic and continue chopping.  You can use a food processor for this if desired.  Add the oil and use a grinding motion to further reduce the pesto to a paste. (If you wish this step may be done in a food processor.)

4. Heat oil in saute pan and add the above.

5. Lift the pasta directly from the cooking water to the pan with tongs, allowing some of the water to ride along. Over high heat, stir and toss the pasta and pesto for a minute or two to allow the sauce to thoroughly coat the strands, adding a little more pasta water if necessary to produce a slightly creamy consistency to the sauce. Add the parmesan cheese.

6. If desired, garnish with a few oregano leaves and a spoonful or two of chopped tomato.

Delicious!  Serve with a simple arugula side salad with 3-2-1 dressing and some goat cheese.