I was looking at some online recipes for pesto (specifically arugula). All the recipes were very similar, save for one notable difference.

Some recipes said to blanch the arugula, followed by an ice bath. Others just said to grind the raw arugula right in there. What, if any, Benifits are there to blanching the arugula first?

  • Posted by: Benny
  • May 2, 2012


Benny May 2, 2012
Thanks. I opted for the full flavor and bite, and skipped the blanching. It was still very green and very tasty. But thank you for clearing that up for me :)
Reiney May 2, 2012
Correct - shocking 5-10 seconds in simmering water will keep the colour of arugula, basil, etc. Salt also helps retain the green colour when cooking any green veg.

You might lose some of the bright flavour but as long as it's only a quick shock you should be fine.
amysarah May 2, 2012
I think blanching is about keeping the arugula's color a nice bright green. Maybe it also cuts its sharpness a bit - not necessarily a benefit, depending on whether you want a mellower flavor.
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