May 13, 2011

Pea Pesto and Ricotta Crostini

Today we bring you - more pesto. And more fresh ricotta. What can we say - it's spring, and there are so many delicious green things waiting to be blended with cheese and oil and happily married with fresh ricotta. This time around we used peas, because they are so fresh and sweet right now, and we put the pesto on little pieces of toast and called them crostini (there was some debate about that, and some research on the difference between bruschetta and crostini, but what's in a name, anyway?), but we're sure you can find many uses for this fresh green spring spread.

Pea Pesto Crostini (makes about 1 cup of pesto; 6 appetizer portions of crostini)

- 1 pound fresh English peas (about 1 cup shelled)
- 1 clove of crushed garlic
- 1/2 cup finely grated parmesan cheese
- 3-4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 baguette, sliced into cross sections
- Fresh ricotta (as much as you need/want)
- Extra olive oil, for drizzling

Bring a medium pot of water to a boil and add the shelled peas. Cook for five minutes, then drain and transfer peas to a food processor.

Add the garlic, cheese, salt, and pepper in with the peas in the food processor, and blend until the mixture forms a paste. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil one tablespoon at a time, pulsing the food processor as you go, until the pesto reaches your desired consistency (more olive oil will give you a saucier pesto; less will make it more of a spread).

Turn on the broiler to high and lay the toast pieces out on a baking sheet. Broil until they are golden brown. Spread a heaping teaspoonful of pesto on each piece of toast, then dollop some ricotta on top. Finish with a drizzle of olive oil, a pinch of salt, and some freshly ground pepper.


  1. This version of pesto looks interesting. I'm only familiar with the genovese pesto, but I'm looking forward to attempting to make this one.

  2. Let us know how it comes out! We've been calling all sorts of things pesto recently. Maybe they're not "true" pestos, but what matters is that they taste good.

  3. Here here. So many culinary terms are used loosely anymore. It's not worth being a purist!

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