fashionably green: an english parsley, walnut and stilton pesto

an English pesto:
parsley, walnut and Stilton
When it comes to fashion, you know you're getting older when the fashions of your youth come around again and frankly you just don't care. These days if I am occasionally fashionable then it is usually by accident.

So it was with some amusement that I discovered that Pantone, the Colour Matching people, had announced that in 2013, the Colour of the Year is Emerald Green - a harmonious colour, reflected all around us in nature. Blimey, I thought to myself. Fashionable, that's me all right, as I looked anew at my recently made parsley pesto with walnuts and stilton. Not only is it delicious, but with its vibrant green hue it could be a bit of a style icon too!

In medieval times, the colour green was associated with love and immorality, while today we see it as a badge of honour in protecting the environment. Green has to be one of my favourite colours as it speaks to me of history - the luxurious silks and velvets worn with sumptuous jewels by royal courtesans. (Of course, this is a colour which I like to wear since it goes with my hair, which is "fire red" - or that's what it says on the box!)

So while this pesto made with a huge bunch of flat leaf parsley from the garden, the nub of some leftover Christmas stilton and a handful of walnuts isn't particularly fashionable, luxurious or good for the environment, it is the most intensely green sauce I have made in a very long time. It was perfect spooned over a little penne pasta and certainly cheered me up on a grey drizzly day.

A recipe can be found for this in the incomparable Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall's River Cottage Every Day or something very similar using an artisan cheddar in his column on The Guardian's website.

  • Stir into soups such as pea and ham, celeriac, cauliflower or Jerusalem artichoke.
  • A good accompaniment with gammon, grilled fish or as a coating for lamb chops or a rack of lamb.
  • A dollop on crostini makes perfect party food.
I do think that poor old parsley is seriously underrated in this country, which is why I am entering my rather English parsley pesto into I am entering this into Karen at Lavender and Lovage's Herbs on Saturday blog challenge , which this month is hosted by Vanesther at Bangers and Mash.

And I am really looking forward to seeing all the other gorgeous herby entries!


o cozinheiro este algarve said...

This looks tasty.I love your use of the word "nub" in this and the jambalaya post -It´s such a good word.I think nub is going to become my buzz word for 2013.I matched a butternut squash soup to a paint chart last spring-its great fun co-ordinating your meals with your decor!!!!!!!-only joking

Marmaduke Scarlet said...

I'm glad you like it - it is one of my favourite words. It has a nice 17th century feel about it!

I'm wondering if I should set a challenge for food bloggers who like design - cook the pantone colour palette! (Or just the Dulex paint chart!)

o cozinheiro este algarve said...

I´m well up for that.

Marmaduke Scarlet said...

I have just spent the last 10 minutes on the Dulux Paint chart site and chortling away to myself. So many of their paints have food-related names - paprika, nutmeg, lime zest, lemon chiffon . . . Volcanic Splash (a deep red) would be perfect for a chilli-tomato sauce. Not sure what to do with Green Parrot, but I am sure it's open to interpretation!

Sadly, food and paint don't seem to be a natural pairing . . . so it might be just you and me on this one . . . in my youth, I thought that the two best jobs in the world would either to be the headline writer on a tabloid or the person who comes up with the names for lipsticks . . . maybe it is time to colour match food - I need a change in direction!

o cozinheiro este algarve said...

Our landing is painted Flor de oregao.
The lovely pale lavender colour of the oregano flour.I am sure that would lend itself to somethin with this whole concept of food pairings.

Marmaduke Scarlet said...

Sounds beautiful!

Perhaps we are on the money - apparently a new bar has opened in San Francisco called Trick Dog that has a Pantone cocktail menu!

Karen S Booth said...

A STUNNING entry into Herbs on Saturday and I am a BIG lover and promoter of the humble parsley! Karen

Marmaduke Scarlet said...

Thank you kindly! Totally agree - parsley is so underrated - it is almost as if the British have thrown it over now that we can get our hands on sunnier herbs. Hmmmn - I have feel the need for a Sunday roast gammon with parsley sauce!

Unknown said...

From one parsley sauce lover to another. We also think it is underrated, we like to splash it over our pie & Mash. A great combination that as proven itself year after year and still going strong.