Carrot Top Pesto
Carrot Top Pesto
A great way to use every part of the carrot. Carrot top pesto is made with refreshing mint, garlic, lemon, and olive oil for a bright and fresh dip that is delicious on sandwiches, grilled vegetables, crackers, and more!
- 1 clove garlic
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon zest
- 1 large or two smaller bunches carrot tops
- 1/4 cup mint leaves
- 4 green onions
- 1/2 cup walnuts
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Prepare the carrot tops by removing the thick stem pieces by cutting about 2 inches of the stem above the carrot.
- Bring a pot of water to a boil on the stove and prepare a large bowl by filling with ice cubes and cold water.
- Once the water is boiling, add the carrot tops to the pot and stir occasionally to blanch the carrots tops by cooking for about 3 minutes or until the tops are bright green.
- Immediately remove the pot from the stove, and transfer the carrot tops into the ice water bowl.
- Wring out any excess liquid from the carrot tops and set out to dry until ready.
- Add the garlic, lemon juice, lemon zest, carrot tops, mint leaves, green onions, walnuts, and olive oil to a food processor or blender and blend until a chunky paste forms. Add a little more olive oil or water if needed to reach desired consistency.
- Store pesto in the refrigerator in a covered food storage container for several days.
Smart Shopping Tips
- Select fresh carrots that feel plump and firm to the touch, have consistent coloring throughout, and have leaves that are bright and non-wilted.
- Remove green, leafy tops attached to carrots by cutting off green tops before storing in refrigerator. Wrap the tops in a damp paper towel to prevent premature wilting.
- Prepare to roast the carrot roots by preheating the oven to 400 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum oil for easy cleanup. Coat each carrot in olive oil and arrange them in a single layer on the baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt and paper to taste. Roast the carrots in the oven until they are lightly caramelized and tender, or for about 25-35 minutes. Be sure to turn the carrots halfway through cooking time to get a nice even color.
- Substitute regular orange carrots with the multicolored carrots to add color to your plate.