Lately I have this big urge to get clean. Something about the changing of the seasons, the end of the Jewish holidays marking the new Jewish year, and other personal matters, make me feel that something has ended and something new is about to begin. And something new means renewal, and I want to get to that renewal clean. As clean as I can get, body and soul. Tabula rasa. I want to get to this new thing that is about to start as if (and only as if) nothing has ever stuck to me, as if I have no previous fears or any past baggage, as if I were seeing things for the first time.
But it’s not just the feeling of wanting to clean the mind, it’s also a feeling of wanting the physical cleanliness. It starts with a tremendous desire to throw all the clothes I have in my closet and never wear them again (not necessarily wanting to buy new clothes, more like not wanting to wear the clothes I wore till now). It continues with the physical need for cleaning – peeling masks to remove dead skin layers, face scrubs, nourishing hair masks (which is so needed after this summer), cleaning the house ..! Recently, I have this desire to open all the windows in the house and let the air in after months of constantly using the air conditioner.
And then there is the cleaning that comes from the outside in (or is it from the inside out?)- the desire to nourish my body with things that are good for it, stimulate it, and make it essential and healthy, food that will circle through my body and replace all the bad things I’ve been filling it with until now (I’ve mentioned the holidays before…). We are what we eat, I’m a strong believer in that. When I see on my plate food that I consider as good for me, I immediately get a sense of pride in the plate (especially if I made it!), and real joy that this is the food I chose to feed my body with this time.
So lately I have the desire to get clean, and though I would be happy to go on a two weeks vacation in some secluded retreat that serves amazing vegetarian food and has yoga classes all day, my reality is a bit different, so I try to make as many small choices as possible that will suit me and these feelings I have and it’s actually going pretty nice. Perhaps this desire to cleanse is the main part of the renewal, and I wish to be able to accept this desire and reach the new season that comes without any strings from the past, clean, complete, ready.
Isn’t pesto is the greatest? Small jar full with so many possibilities! You can use it to upscale a simple vegetable salad, pasta, baked potatoes, sandwich and many more, all you need is a tablespoon of pesto and you’re done. So pesto is good, but kale pesto- that’s just excellent. You can enjoy all the pesto goodness and nourish the body with something super (wink wink) healthy. The pesto kale is also a great way to introduce kale into your life (if you haven’t already did) for someone who finds it a bit difficult to deal with the strong cabbage taste.
Unlike most pestos, in kale pesto you don’t want to use the stems, simply because their texture is a bit woody. Other than that, it’s easy to prepare and done entirely in a food processor.
- 2 cups (120 gr/ 4 oz) kale, without the stems
- 1/2 cup walnuts
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, (50 gr/ 1½ oz)
- 2 garlic cloves
- zest + juice of 1 lemon
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- In a food processor, place all the ingredients, except from the olive oil, and blend into a paste texture.
- While the food processor is running, add the olive oil gradually until you reach the consistency you prefer. If you want a more thin pesto, add more olive oil. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.
- Transfer to a jar and refrigerate for up to 10 days. To maintain the pesto bright green color, add a little olive oil to the jar after each use, making a layer of protection from the air.
- You can veganize the pesto by excluding the parmesan cheese. In that case, I would mix the walnuts with cashews or other kind of nut for more deep flavors.
- If you find the taste of kale alone too strong (or if you just want to vary)- swap half of the kale for basil. tasty.
- For kale pest pasta- just mix the pesto in a pan with about half a cup of the pasta cooking water on medium heat for about 2 minutes, then add the cooked pasta and mix until full cover for another minute. You can scrape more parmesan over the serving.