Fennel Frond Pesto

This is not my invention, but I definitely am willing to partake in as well as share this yumminess.

Fennel frond pesto! Who would have thought! I have a patch of fennel that continuously comes back in my perennial garden bed. It easily reseeds itself, and the sweet smell of fennel is welcome any day. I have an abundance of fronds, and had saved this “recipe” for an idea on what to do with these heavenly leaves.

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I chose to do a variation which I often do when making pesto. Instead of parmesan and pine nuts, I use nutritional yeast and walnuts. I typically have nutritional yeast on hand, it can be found in the bulk section, and I like the flavor. Walnuts are easier to come by than pine nuts as well, and I have those more often than pine nuts.

How to make fennel frond pesto:

  • 2.5 loose cups of fennel fronds
  • 2 – 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 cup toasted walnuts
  • 1 Tablespoon nutritional yeast
  • 1/4 cup olive oil

Add ingredients in that order to a blender / food processor / chopper. Whir away, scraping down sides if needed.

Transfer to a refrigerator dish.

I enjoyed this on some crackers, and it was extra special.

I think this is a wonderful alternative pesto for when basil is not in season. My fennel pops up early in spring so this is a more practical solution for when I want to make pesto.

This will definitely be part of my regular rotation.

It’s so beautiful and green!

This would be excellent on a spring inspired pizza, regular pasta, as a veggie dip, and toast.

Peace and love,

Kristan

Ground Cherry Jam

Each classroom at my school received a massive quantity of ground cherries for our snack. My students enjoyed them and I gave them as many as they could eat! There was still a bunch leftover so I took them home and did a little research on this old fashioned fruit.

Ground cherries were ubiquitous in the early days of the Americas. I knew their interesting slight tacky feel was familiar but I couldn’t quite place it. I soon discovered these are related to tomatillos and also come with a husk around them.

Making jam was a safe bet with these interesting fruits. I actually really like eating them raw, but had my fill of them in that form. I rinsed them, whirred then in a chopper, added them to a pot with some sugar and simmered away!

I remembered to save a bit for seeds because I’d like to plant some in my garden. I’ve never seen these in a store before!

I typically can jams that wouldn’t require pectin, but happened to have a package on hand and squeezed about half into the mixture.

I was pleasantly surprised at the turnout!

Ground cherries are very seedy, but not as noticeable as say, guava.

Have you tried ground cherries?

Peace and love,

Kristan

April Groceries, etcetera

Generally I make two loaves of sourdough every other weekend, but knew I wasn’t in the mood this weekend. I also wanted to hit up the Boise farmer’s market that was just opening up for the season. The only thing I was able to get was this loaf of sourdough bread, which looks ten times better than mine somehow. I was disappointed in how much fresh produce was already packaged in plastic bags or clamshells. Better luck later in the season I’m hoping.

After the market, I stopped in at the Boise Co-op which is a package free haven. Everything else was purchased there.

I’ve not been present here as much lately mostly because I am a teacher and have been working and also trying to figure out how to balance all the things in life I love while working full time.

I’m also volunteering to teach a “how to live a low waste life” class this month and next, and to be perfectly honest I’m nervous about it because I’m an introvert, and because I’ve never done such a thing and definitely don’t consider myself an expert. I have, however, read basically every blog post from my favorite bloggers, watched innumerable YouTube videos on the topic, devoured Zero Waste Home by Bea Johnson (twice), listen to low waste podcasts, and have carefully considered how to reduce my waste in every aspect of my life for the past 18 months.

At times I feel I am a woman possessed. I think, breathe, eat, and create with zero waste as a priority.

I think it’s time to let all my knowledge overtake my actions and trust myself and my intuition enough to know that I am enough, I have learned enough, and even if I stumble, I can get right back up and continue this journey. My whole life I have been afraid of failure. I have never felt like I was enough as a person, but I feel that now, at 32, I am ready to take on everything life has to offer. I am quite the late bloomer :).

Peace and love,

Kristan