I've never been pesto's biggest fan. In fact, I pretty much hate it on pasta. BUT slap it on some meat and I'm in love. One of my favourite fancy-ish suppers to make includes pesto-stuffed, prosciutto-wrapped chicken breasts. Oh baby. So so so good.
A couple nights ago, when I noticed that I had a bag of spinach with no plans, I decided to whip up a "pesto." Then I noticed the pork tenderloin in my fridge and figured if pesto tastes good with chicken, why not pork?
Gather up your ingredients: spinach, nuts of some sort - I used walnuts but pecans would be delicious too, Parmesan cheese, olive oil, a lemon or lemon juice, a couple cloves of garlic, salt, and pepper.
First throw the whole bag of spinach in your food processor and pulse a couple times until there's enough room to add the rest of the ingredients. It will look something like this:
Then, add about 1/2 cup of Parmesan cheese, 1/2 cup nuts (lightly toasting them will give your pesto incredible flavour), 2-3 cloves of garlic, about 1 Tbsp of lemon juice.
Pour about 1/2 cup of olive oil in while blending until desired consistency. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Use as a traditional pesto sauce for pasta or split open some meat and slather it on. For my pork tenderloin I just split it in half and pressed it down so it would lay flat, spread the pesto on top, and folded it back over. Normally I would do a pinwheel cut, but this tenderloin just wasn't thick enough.
For chicken breasts I usually cut a little pocket. For steak, I love to make pesto butter and melt it on top. Yum!