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Bavarian foodie treats or How to add a fabulous twist to an old classic?

Rosenheim 2013

Last weekend my lovely friend Rachel and I went for a short trip to Germany to visit my family and friends in Bavaria. Now, I’ve always admitted to being a bit biased when it comes to this region of Germany and the picture above might go some way to explaining why. It really is outrageously picturesque… This square will soon be lit up by cosy fairy-lights, emerging from the wooden huts on the Christmas market and the air will be filled with delectable smells of mulled wine and roasting garlic mushrooms.

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I can’t wait to get experimenting and sharing some recipes with my latest vegan discoveries from Germany. There’s herb flavoured cheese slices, sweets, patés, melting pizza cheese, veggie sausages (of course!) and much more. No doubt, you’ll soon be reading about some of my yummy loot that very nearly tipped my suitcase over the airline’s weight allowance!

For today, I’d like to share a recipe from my friend Andrea’s blog though. A few people have asked me for the recipe of her Parsley and Walnut pesto that I used in my Spacehopper Squash Soup (click the link above for Andrea’s full post). It is delicious without added cheese too, but Vegusto’s Piquant or VBites’ Parmesan Style cheese would both work well in this recipe for a vegan version. I always love doing a food shoot with Andrea as we inevitably share a tasty lunch after the morning’s work is done!

What’s the most unusual pesto combination you’ve tried? I bet there are some great ideas out there!

parsley and walnut pesto

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Parsley and Walnut Pesto

75g shelled walnuts
1 garlic clove, roughly chopped
50g parsley leaves
175 ml rapeseed or extra virgin olive oil
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Sea salt & ground pepper to taste
50g Grana Padano cheese, grated

Put all the ingredients except the cheese and salt & pepper in a food processor and blitz. Pour into a bowl and add cheese and season to taste. You may need to adjust the amount of oil, depending on the consistency. If you’re freezing, add it to small freezer bags at this stage, adding cheese and seasoning after it’s defrosted. If you’re going to use immediately or store in the fridge, add the cheese and season to taste. It will keep in a jar, covered in olive oil for a couple of weeks.

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If you still have any tasty tomatoes to hand, they’re lovely roasted with olive oil and eaten on top of pasta mixed with this pesto and some goats cheese. I also love Louisa of Eat Your Veg‘s recipe for roast mushrooms with pasta and this pesto.

Just dipping some good bread in a bowl of parsley and walnut pesto is yummy too. And having just read quite how rich parsley is in antioxidants, iron, Vitamin C and Vitamin A and how walnuts are an excellent source of healthy omega 3 fatty acids and monounsaturated fats, this is definitely nutritious snacking.

A great way of showing that parsley is so much more than a cursory garnish too!

The lovely photos in this post were taken by my friend Chava Eichner, who used some of this pesto with her very tasty looking squash and bean soup.

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