Hello! Erin from The Forest Feast here, bringing you the second recipe in my series of Farmers Market Feasts for the month of May. There is a fantastic little seasonal farmers market that recently began down the road from me in the mountains. I try to go every week, and I've been getting to know the farmers, which is fun! This week I picked up some green garlic and fresh basil to make a creamy avocado pesto.
The basil they had at the market was called "sacred basil." It was flowering, so it was too pretty not to buy. I blended these items in my food processor with avocado (for added creaminess), plus parmesan cheese, olive oil and salt. I substituted the usual pine nuts for sunflower seeds since they are much less expensive and still very tasty.
A note on green garlic: green garlic does not have cloves that need to be peeled like regular garlic does. Instead, you simply cut off the roots and slice it like you would an onion. The stalks are edible as well, like scallions.
Creamy Avocado Pesto Gnocchi with Green Garlic
1 ripe avocado, pit removed and flesh scraped from the skin
3 bulbs of green garlic, with a bit of the green stalk (substitute 3 cloves of garlic if you can't find this)
1 cup fresh basil leaves (packed)
1/4 cup shaved parmesan, plus extra to serve
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup sunflower seeds (roasted and salted), plus extra to serve
A pinch of coarse salt
2 (16-ounce) packages gnocchi
Blend the avocado, green garlic, basil, parmesan, olive oil, sunflower seeds, and salt in a blender until smooth.
Cook the gnocchi according to package instructions. Drain and combine the gnocchi with the pesto. Enjoy right away, garnished with sunflower seeds and parmesan shavings.
The pesto recipe above makes enough for two 16oz packages of gnocchi. If you are just cooking one package, you may consider using half of the creamy pesto as a dip with crudite, or on crostini. The pesto is also great on pasta!
(Food images by Erin Gleeson; Photo of Erin at the market by Anna Rosales)