Nettle and Lemon Balm Pesto

Nettle and Lemon Balm Pesto

One sunny Sunday afternoon my husband Howard, son Ted and I decided to go for a walk through a local country park. Howard and Ted decided to forge for blackberries and I wanted to find nettles. My mum recently gave me a book by Reader’s Digest called The Ultimate Book of Herbs. In the book it gives a short explanation about what to look for when searching for nettles.

The nettles must be on more than 10 centimetres high and you must only pick the top leaves from the plant. The small leaves at the top are the tastiest. The large leaves can be slightly bitter. There are a number of dishes you can make with nettles but I wanted to try pesto. We have been growing lemon balm in the garden all summer too so I decided to add it to this pesto. The result were amazing and we all enjoyed this dish.

Have you ever been forging and if so what was it like for you? If not would you consider it? Let me know in the comments below and please don’t forget to like and follow me.

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Serves 4

Equipment needed

  • Baking tray
  • Food processor
  • Scales
  • Measuring jug
  • Sharp knife
  • Zester
  • Juicer or fork
  • Tablespoon
  • Frying pan


  • Pine nuts or cashew nuts x 100g
  • Olive oil x 80mls
  • Nettles x 2 large handful
  • Lemon balm x 1 large handful
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • Put the nettles into a large bowl.
  • Boil the kettle and pour enough boiling water on top of the nettles to cover them.
  • Leave to soak for 2 minutes.
  • Drain the nettles and discard of the water.
  • You could drink the water once it’s cooled as it’s basically nettle tea.
  • Place the pine nuts or cashew nut, olive oil, nettles, lemon balm and salt and pepper to taste into the food processor and blend.
  • Cook the pasta as per the packet instructions.
  • Pour the pesto into a large mixing bowl.
  • Then add the pasta and mix until the pasta is covered in the pesto.
  • Serve with a sliced tomatoes and then enjoy.
Nettle and Lemon Balm Pesto

Nettle and Lemon Balm Pesto was a big hit in our house. We love pesto but this one is very different to the pesto’s I have made in the past. Therefore I was slightly concerned that my little family may not enjoy it as much as previous pesto’s. I was pleasantly surprised when the plates were cleaned by the end of the meal. It was a delicious, earthy dish with a hint of lemon. It was so yummy. I had the leftovers for lunch the next day and it was as tasty as the day before. However you decide to eat this dish, as always, please enjoy. Thank you xxx