Pesto Festo’s Winning Recipes


A Young Market Goer Enjoys a Pesto Popsicle

Thanks to all who joined us to celebrate the basil season at the third annual Pesto Festo at Ferguson Farmers Market!  Pesto Festo, a celebration of local FARMS(Food, Art, Relationships and Music, Sustainably) featured visits with local green organizations and businesses, as well as gardening demos, live music, and of course, a pesto cook-off!

Many thanks to food bloggers Kimberly Henricks of Rhubarb and Honey,  and Stephanie Tolle aka Iron Steph, our pesto contest judges, for evaluating the dishes, and picking the top three.

Pesto Festo judges

And the Winner is . . . Pesto Popsicles!

By popular request, the contest’s first, second, and third place winners have shared their recipes.  Enjoy!

First Place: Elizabeth Simons’s Pesto Popsicles

Makes 8 mini popsicles


  • 2 cups Spinach
  • 2 cups Vanilla Yogurt
  • 1/3 cup Basil
  • 1/3 cup Pine Nuts


  1. Mix all ingredients in a blender.
  2. Pour mixture into 8 small (3 oz.) paper cups.
  3. Cover cups with aluminum foil and poke hole in center.
  4. Insert popsicle sticks into foil holes.
  5. Freeze overnight.
  6. Remove foil and tear off paper.
  7. Enjoy!

Second Place:  Stephanie Morgan’s Carrot Top Pesto:

  • 2-3 cups (or more) of carrots tops (remove most of center stem and just use the frond parts)
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts or walnuts
  • 1/2 cup olive oil (plus more for storing)
  • 2-3 cloves fresh garlic
  • Handful of fresh basil leaves, parsley, and or cilantro
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan or Asiago cheese
  • Salt to taste

Combine garlic and pine/walnuts in food processor and process until a paste like consistency. Add carrot tops and basil,parsley, and cilantro. Pulse processor until greens are well minced. Slowly add oil while processor is running. If too dry add more oil. Add grated cheese and pulse processor a couple of times until well mixed. Add salt if needed. Place in container and pour additional olive oil on top to retain color. Keep in fridge up to a week. Freezes well.

Third Place: Moira Ross’s Pesto Flatbread

Prepare a favorite flatbread for piling on the next 5 ingredients (you can even use a Bobolini crust – thin).  Spread a generous layer of the mint/basil pesto (recipe follows), followed by arugula, chopped EarthDance tomatoes*, and crumbled goat cheese. Give the whole thing a drizzle of balsamic vinaigrette. That’s it. Yum!

PESTO: Toast about 1 cup of pine nuts in skillet. Grab 2 handfulls of freshly picked basil and mint, each. Combine nuts and basil and mint in a blender or processor until finely chopped up. Add good quality EVOO (the money you saved on picking your own basil and mint should go into getting REAL extra virgin olive oil, preferably from a specialty shop -its worth it baby!) in a slow drizzle, and blend until a consistency that is good for spreading.

*Be cautious of substituting another grower’s tomatoes here. The taste of the flatbread may be compromised.