Mint Pesto

Veering off the well-trodden path of classic basil pesto, this delicate mint pesto is both zesty and bright.

When I first made it, I thought the mint flavor would hit me hard in the face. But in fact, combined here with parsley, it has a subtle freshness that makes it versatile. Tiny bits of chopped almonds give it texture, too.


Another alluring quality to this pesto is its bright green color. To keep it bright for a few days, blanch the mint and parsley briefly in boiling water, and then shock them in an ice water bath. The boiling water kills the browning enzymes that quickly cause the leaves—and the resulting pesto—to turn a drab olive color.

A trace amount of the flavor leeches out in the process, but this is also what makes the mint mellow instead of overpowering. Plus, we eat with our eyes, so I vote for blanching. You can also use this method for basil pesto or any other green herb you use in pesto.