Makes ½ cup
The pesto can also be made in a food processor or blender, though the recipe will require an additional clove or more of garlic.
1 to 2 cloves garlic
½ teaspoon kosher salt, divided
3 tablespoons pine nuts
¾ bunch (12 ounces) dandelion greens, trimmed and chopped
2 tablespoons finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
2 tablespoons finely grated pecorino Romano cheese
2 to 4 tablespoons fruity olive oil
Lemon juice, if desired, to taste
Using a mortar and pestle, grind the garlic and 1/8 teaspoon salt to a smooth paste. Add the pine nuts and grind until smooth. Add a handful of dandelion greens and a sprinkling of salt, grinding to break the leaves down to a pulp, until all the dandelion greens and salt are incorporated (this can take up to 30 minutes). Add the cheeses and olive oil, grinding and stirring to combine. Taste, adjusting the cheese and seasoning if desired. Add a touch of lemon juice to brighten the flavors if you like.