Carrot tops are full of flavour, and like the leaves of other roots (e.g. celeriac or beetroot) if they’re in reasonable nick, they’re good to eat - so don’t throw them on the compost. Pick off the larger stems closer to the carrot and use those to flavour stocks. Keep the feathery leaves which can be used much like parsley and spinach. Indeed they are part of the same family coriander, fennel and parsley (as well as the more obvious parsnip)
This pesto is great tossed through pasta, or drizzled over roasted carrots, new potatoes or greens. Try crumbling mozzarella or sheep’s cheese over the top too.
- leafy tops from 1 bunch of carrots, larger stems discarded, feathery leaves chopped
- small handful basil leaves, or try parsley or chervil for a different flavour
- 50g walnuts, hazelnuts or almonds
- 25g Parmesan, or vegetarian equivalent
- 1 garlic clove
- approx. 100ml or so olive oil
- salt and pepper
In a food processor, blitz the carrot tops, basil, nuts, parmesan and garlic.
Gradually add enough oil to make a pesto consistency.
Season to taste.