Make Ahead

Vegan Kale + Pepita Pesto

January 26, 2014
2 Ratings
  • Makes 2 cups
Author Notes

A whole bunch of kale can quickly be turned into a gorgeously green pesto, flecked with toasted pepitas, a touch of cilantro and chili if you so desire. If I'm making it knowing the kids will be eating it I leave these out, but if I'm being greedy... I put them in, that way only I get to eat it. Naughty mum, I know.

As with any pesto this is wonderful stirred through cooked pasta, smeared onto toast, swirled through a bowlful of steaming hot soup or vegetable stew, or thinned down with a little extra lemon juice and olive oil and used as a wonderful dressing. I like to use the leaves and stalks of cilantro in my pesto, just chop up the stalks a little. By all means, use just the leaves if preferred. I've only come across white miso that's made with rice, but some miso pastes are fermented with wheat or barley, so double-check the ingredients if you are gluten-free. —Emma Galloway | My Darling Lemon Thyme

What You'll Need
  • 1 bunch kale (approx 250-300g), washed, spun + stems removed
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup lightly toasted pepita seeds
  • 1 cup loosely packed cilantro leaves + soft stems
  • 1-2 green Serrano chilies, seeded + roughly chopped
  • 185 milliliters extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon white (shiro) miso paste
  1. Place kale, garlic, pepitas, cilantro and chilies, if using, into a food processor. Pulse until finely chopped, you may need to stop it occasionally to scrape down the sides or move things around a little to get it all going. With the motor still running, drizzle in the olive oil in a steady stream. Lastly add the lemon juice and miso, give it one final whiz, taste and season with sea salt and black pepper. If not using straight away pack into a clean glass jar, cover with a thin film of olive oil and store in the fridge for up to 1 week.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • sexyLAMBCHOPx
  • Emma Galloway | My Darling Lemon Thyme
    Emma Galloway | My Darling Lemon Thyme
Former chef | Author of My Darling Lemon Thyme-Recipes from my real food kitchen | Photographer

2 Reviews

sexyLAMBCHOPx January 26, 2014
looks tasty, but I would swap out the cilantro for a mix of other herbs. Can't stand cilantro, lol.
Emma G. January 29, 2014
Italian parsley or basil would be a perfect substitute. I know cilantro is a love or hate thing ;-)