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Diet pesto

Pesto with roasted turnip

My belt having given up a notch and warned me of imminent danger, this morning I finally forced myself to go stand on the scales. The time for denial came to an end. I was 10 pounds over my ideal weight. To me, that’s the red-alert stage, meaning that a diet must begin this very day. The previous diet was three years ago. This is my usual pattern, up and down within a 10-pound range.

I had already planned to have pesto for supper. Fine. It would have to be as austere a pesto as I could make.

My usual pesto is anything but austere. I’ve always been generous with the nuts and parmesan, so an indecent amount of olive oil is necessary to liquefy everything. Today’s pesto was about five parts spinach, five parts parsley, and one part basil. The season of all-basil pesto is at least a couple of months away if not longer. I used only a couple of walnuts and a couple of teaspoons of parmesan (as well as a teaspoon of vinegar) to keep the requirement for olive oil low. (Though I had a few walnuts and a sprinkling of parmesan on the side.) I ground the basil in the mortar and pestle, but I used the food processor for everything else.

Roasted turnips are surprising satisfying on a low-carb diet. The pesto wasn’t terrible.

One of my resolutions for this year is to eat more leaves — lots more leaves. Chard, parsley, spinach, kale, and romaine are already under way in the garden. I’ll have more posts this spring about eating more leaves, and why I think that’s so important (hat trip Michael Pollan).

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