• 4 cups nasturtium leaves
  • 1 cup nasturtium flowers
  • 1/2 C. olive oil
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 1 cup roasted walnuts
  • 1 cup yellow sweet bell pepper
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • (optional: 1 cup. Parmesan)

Nasturtiums are an edible trailing flower in vibrant colors of yellow, orange, and red. They grow and re-seed very well in my front yard garden, so I’ve had them available for years. The flowers taste a bit peppery, similar to arugula, so I have always used them in green salads and to top potato salads. They add a “wow” factor! For the first time this year, I decided to also try using the green leaves in my cooking. Great success! I highly recommend you try using your nasturtium leaves, if you haven’t already.

First I made a pesto. (See ingredients at top of page). Put all ingredients into a large food processor and blend for about 1 minute, or until evenly pureed. Add more oil as needed to smooth it out.

This pesto is great with noodles, or on a savory toast like bruschetta.

Since I was attending a barter the next day, I decided to make several other items with my nasturtium leaf pesto, for variety.

I divided my pesto into 1/2 cup portions.

I made a cream cheese spread with some of it. I added two 8 ounce rectangles of cream cheese to my food processor and then added back 1/2 cup of pesto and a few small yellow bell peppers. Puree. This was delicious over crackers.

Lastly I made a butter spread. I added two 1/2 cup sticks of real butter, 1/2 cup pesto, and a few small red sweet peppers. Puree. This was marvelous over rice and would also be good with noodles, or any other cooked grain, or over bread/toast.

The rest of the pesto I put into two small jars.

I offered samples at the barter I attended and these items were all spoken for within minutes. They were spicy, unique, and beautiful.

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I roast all of my walnuts. Bake at 350 for 10 minutes, let cool. Yum.

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PESTO

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Nasturtium Pesto Cream Cheese Spread

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Decorate the cream cheese with flowers and leaves and wrap in wax paper if giving as a gift.

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Decorate Nasturtium Pesto Butter before wrapping in wax paper.

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Here I am at the bartering event. I also made a lovely bright Nasturtium and Bell Pepper dipping sauce. (recipe will be in a separate blog post).