When we moved into our house, one of the first things we did in the garden was to remove a huge, ugly shrub and replace it with a beautiful, fragrant herb garden. It looks gorgeous, smells divine, and is a handy source of seasoning and recipe inspiration! I’ve even grown my own camomile flowers for tea! If you have even a little bit of space to give over to herbs, I heartily recommend it.
We also have a small vegetable plot, and it is starting to reward us with a delicious array of fresh vegetables. We had picked some fine beans, and the first baby corn of the year, and I wanted to make something simple to go with them – it seemed a shame to bury them in something complex, or overpower them with other flavours. Then my eyes alighted on the herb garden. Bingo!
I gathered a selection of herbs and whizzed them up into this delicious garden herb pesto. We had it on tagliatelle, but I think it would make a great dressing for new potatoes, or even as a dip/spread with breadsticks or crackers. With our garden-fresh vegetables it made a delightfully summery meal.
I’m afraid the ingredients list for this pesto is a bit vague. Grab a handful of mixed fresh herbs and see what happens! I used variable amounts of marjoram, chives, rosemary, fennel, sage and parsley, and threw in a few flowers that I’d snipped off the basil. There were a few chive flowers too, that made a very pretty (and tasty) garnish. As long as you have a good mixture, I think you’ll get a delicious result. Different every time!
We usually have spaghetti or short pasta, but I thought that tagliatelle seemed just right as a conduit for this delicious pesto. DH agreed with me, and in an unprompted comment, so it must be true! (To be honest, I would have gone with an even wider noodle, something like pappardelle, but I couldn’t find any…)
Whizz this up, and enjoy. We stretched it between the three of us, but it really only makes enough pesto for two adult servings.
- 120-150g tagliatelle
- 20g mixed garden herbs - e.g. marjoram, chives, rosemary, fennel, sage, parsley, basil
- 10g pine nuts
- 1 small clove garlic (or half a large one)
- 15g grated hard cheese (parmesan or similar)
- 2 tbsp good olive oil
- Pinch sea salt
- Pinch of ground black pepper
- Cook the tagliatelle in a large pan of boiling water, according to the packet instructions - ours took 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, wash the herbs and strip the leaves from any tough or woody stems. Place the leaves, pine nuts, garlic, cheese, olive oil and seasonings into a blender or mini-chopper and process for several minutes until smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl occasionally to make sure everything is well combined.
- When the pasta has cooked, add 1-2 tbsp of the cooking water to the pesto and blend again to combine.
- Drain the tagliatelle, toss with the pesto, and serve.