Kale Pesto: A Celebratory Farm to School Month Snack
Posted on October 7, 2020
Our Farm to School work has always had a strong focus on the cafeteria, which we often call the biggest classroom in the school building. To celebrate Farm to School Month this October, the SHelburne Farms Inn Kitchen reimagined a staple recipe from our first-of-its-kind cookbook for school nutrition professionals, kale pesto! (Recipe below.)
And one more thing to celebrate during Farm to School Month: Universal Free School Meals! As a result of Covid-19 and flexibilities at the federal level, for the first time ever, all Vermont schools are currently providing Universal Free School Meals to their students. This has been a long sought after goal of organizations that make up the state’s Farm to School Network, and now our commitment is stronger than ever to move the state to a permanent Universal Free School Meals platform incorporating the Farm to School model of healthy meals made with locally sourced ingredients.
Kale Pesto & a student taste test at the Sustainability Academy's Kale Celebration, 2015.
- 1 large bunch Tuscan kale*, ribs and stems removed
- Kosher salt
- ⅓ cup raw pistachios
- 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 garlic clove
- 1/2 cup Parmesan, finely grated
*The Inn Kitchen found Tuscan kale to work best, although any type will work. Find out more about the different types of kale here.
- Cook the kale in a large pot of boiling salted water for 30 seconds (until the color turns bright green and the leaves are wilted). Remove kale from the pot with tongs and cool in a bowl of ice water.
- Once the kale is cool, remove from the ice water and squeeze out any excess water with your hands.
- Put the kale, nuts, olive oil, and parmesan in a blender and blend while adding the olive oil in a steady stream.
- Once the pesto has reached the desired smoothness and consistency, season with salt to taste. Toss with pasta or steamed vegetables, or use as a dip with crackers!
Recipe adapted from New School Cuisine: Nutritious and Seasonal Recipes for School Cooks by School Cooks & Bon Appetit.
Senator Leahy celebrating the release of our cookbook, 2014.