Pork and Pesto


Spring has sprung! I am loving the 70 something weather, the blooming mountain laurel filling the air with grape-sodaish aroma, and then finally getting outside to plant some flowers and vegetables. It is also the time when I start craving lighter, summery entrees, full of crisp fruits and vegetables. And maybe a margarita. Oh and chocolate…but you know how that is.
Every so often I like to break the chicken/beef dinner rut and mix it up with some fish, or pork. Pork loin is a nutritious lean meat packed with B vitamins such as thiamin. Pork contains a whopping 54% thiamin which aids in metabolism. It helps break down carbohydrates to fuel your nervous system and brain. That being the case and having a busy, busy 8 month old boy to keep up with, I know I need a lot of thiamin. 

My husband will pick up a huge pork loin from Costco and before freezing will cut it up into chops and roasts. Very cost-effective. Grilled pork loin chops is a family favorite, mainly because of this gem of a recipe for cilantro pesto I will share with you.

This is THE best pesto I have ever had by a long shot. Very healthy and good on everything. Thank you Southern Living!

Cilantro Pesto:
1/2 cup loosely packed fresh cilantro leaves
1/2 cup loosely packed fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 garlic cloves (I use jarred, minced garlic so about 1-1 1/2 tsp)
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 Tablespoons toasted pine nuts
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup olive oil  (I use extra-virgin)

I don’t use pine nuts very often so instead of running to the grocery every time just for a little bag, I buy one large bag of them and keep them in the freezer. I put 2 tablespoons frozen pine nuts on a baking sheet and broil, flipping them once until both sides are lightly browned.

After they are toasted (and not burned…you have to watch them like a hawk I have learned…), I combine all the ingredients except the olive oil in a little food processor. Pulse 10 times until chopped. Then drizzle olive oil over mixture and pulse 6 more times. Serve as is or can cover and chill.

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Hope you find this recipe as enjoyable as we do! Let me know what you think!

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