Thursday, September 20, 2012

sage pesto

Autumn is coming. Which could possibly mean winter is coming where I live -- it honestly could be any time, it's happened this early before. The garden is never more alluring than now, is it?

Sage, Salvia officinalis, has taken over me. I want to smell it, eat it, and drink it. I want to dump it over my head. I was thinking a couple of nights ago over our dinner of roasted squash and sage butter that this was one of the things I would choose for my last meal, if I get to choose.

About mid-summer I began to notice how stocky and gorgeous the sage plants were this year. I started picking sage bouquets for the vase on the kitchen table and have been doing so ever since. Then I started cooking with it more. Today a sage pesto was made. Not a pesto that you'd eat gobbed onto bread like basil pesto, this is one for roasted squash or potatoes or chicken or soup. It is potent and powerfully good. Eight tablespoon-size mounds went into the freezer and the ninth is for the half butternut squash left in the fridge.

I was taught by one of my herbal teachers that the plants that thrive in our gardens through the ups and downs of the growing season are the ones that can act as adaptogens for us as we move into autumn and winter. That is, they have a normalizing effect and can help us adapt to change. Sage seems to be an adaptogen for me this year.

What adaptogen plants are in your garden?

Sage Pesto

3/4 cup fresh sage leaves
1/4 cup fresh parsley leaves
1 garlic clove
1 t. white wine or champagne vinegar
1/2 t. salt
1/4 t. freshly-ground black pepper
1/4 cup toasted walnuts
1/3 cup olive oil
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Thanks for coming by and happy autumn (or spring) weekending. xo

Also posted over on Food Renegade.


Jacky said...

Delightfull post...your sage looks the epitome of health and abundance!
Beautiful pesto recipe (thanks for sharing) and I like you idea of popping those frozen tablespoonfulls in the freezer.
This winter I made a lovely minestrone type soup which when serving you popped in a dollop of pesto and a drizzle of olive oil. Scrumptious (and really pleasing to the eye).

Jacky xox

Nat Palaskas said...

Thanks Peggy for this recipe. I have sage in our community garden that invites everyone to pick and I just bought a big bunch of parsley to make salsa yesterday. Perfect, I will make this pesto tonight and share with Jacky when I see her tomorrow. Thank you, thank you - Hugs

Peggy said...

Jacky, thanks and I really like your soup flavoring/presentation idea -- it might make me look like a much better cook than I am! ;)

Peggy said...

Hi Nat, oh good -- it's easy to make and if you have any ideas for how to use it once you taste it, pass them on? You & Jacky have fun tomorrow -- lucky girls! :)

Ms. said...

Mmmmmm-SAGE-I will try this 'cause it's squash season-I'm gearing up to make basil pesto for gifts and eating this weekend when I can buy a whole lot of it at the farm market (can't grow that much in the church garden for reason of their wanting more ornamental than functional, but recently I made these two recipes out of the stuff I had on hand:
fig compote
one dozen green figs
a handful of currents
three pieces of candied ginger
a pinch of salt
a packet of stevia or tablespoon of honey
simmer forty minutes
let cool
add one teaspoon rose water

#2 fruit chutney
six fat vine ripened tomatoes
one large red onion
one peach and one apple
three ripe pears
three pieces of candied ginger
a few red pepper flakes
simmer forty minutes
let cool

Peggy said...

Michelle, thank you for these recipes, I've got most of the ingredients to make the fruit chutney!!! this weekend.....I have never tasted a fig compote but am growing a little fig tree (3' tall) so I think I should definitely get to know it better. Maybe starting with your recipe. And I have some currants. Love this sharing so much.

Nancy said...

Peggy, I don't know if I have rolled around in sage as much as you have, but I connect on a deep level to the smell (I think it's a childhood thing). Thanks for this post :)

Peggy said...

Nancy, that is so cool. Maybe the deepest plant connections even possible are those from childhood? -- your own personal aromatherapy...

liniecat said...

Love the sound of the chutney!
I seem to be able to grow chickweed lol which thankfully once youd told us could be eaten, I have taken to my heart and tum!
I bought some almost out of date preserve at the car boot off a stall that sells vegan and veggie end of line produce.
Its divine!
Fig and Apple preserve and its yummy in natural yoghurt too lol

jude said...

i have tons of sage, what a great idea....

Deb G said...

Sage didn't do very well this year, maybe next. But I have some wonderful oregano and thyme. I'm trying to dry a bit more oregano before it dies down for the winter. The thyme I'll just pinch on throughout the winter.

Peggy said...

Jude -- hope you like it!

Deb, you remind me, I've totally forgotten to harvest and dry some oregano. Maybe an oregano pesto for the freezer instead? :)