Dill and Watercress Pesto (v)

Watercress & Dill Pesto

I have started to experiment with different leaves and herbs to make pestos and dressings as a more healthy alternative to sugary, shop bought versions.

The combination of watercress and dill in this pesto makes it an ideal accompaniment for fish dishes. I love it drizzled over a piece of smoked mackerel and free range scrambled egg for breakfast but it is also great stirred through spaghetti with some fresh white crab meat and a little hint of Parmesan*.

I tend to work in handfuls, spoonfuls and squeezes when making sauces and pestos and keep tasting until the flavour is just right.

  • Two handfuls of watercress
  • A big handful of fresh dill
  • A desert spoon of pine nuts
  • A squeeze of lemon juice
  • A good glug of olive oil
  • A pince of salt

Whizz up in a blender, stopping occasionally to scrap off the sides of the bowl. Keep blending until smooth. Taste and alter your lemon and salt to suit. If you want a looser, more dressing like consistency, add a little cold water.

*Or vegetarian alternative

Roast Tomato & Pepper Sauce with Tarragon (v)

Simple, quick and super fresh. Ideal as a quick pizza topping or for stirring through steaming hot pasta.

  • Ten or twelve medium sized tomatoes, washed and left whole
  • A red pepper, deseeded and roughly chopped
  • A handful of tarragon, chopped finely
  • A whole clove of garlic, left in its papery skin
  • A good pinch of sea salt
  • A gloss of good quality oil such as olive or avocado

Heat the oven to 180ÂșC.

In a large tray arrange the tomatoes, pepper and garlic bulb. Scatter over the salt and tarragon and gloss over the oil.

Roast in the over for 45 minutes until the tomatoes have taken on some colour and the garlic is soft. When the garlic is cool enough to handle, separate the cloves and squeeze out the garlic into a blender. Discard the papery skins. Add the rest of the ingredients and blend until smooth. Decant in to a sterilised jar. Keep refrigerated.