Smoked Paprika, Feta & Almond Pesto

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Preparation info

    • Difficulty


Appears in

The Sugar Club Cookbook

By Peter Gordon

Published 1997

  • About

This is one of those Sugar Club items that owes its origin to a mistake. The usual basil and pine-nut pesto (served on grilled squid) was on the menu, but it had run out. As I was preparing to make a new batch panic set in – we had no pine nuts, basil or parmesan. On the spot I had to come up with something that would go with the dish and could be made from ingredients that we did have to hand. This is the result, and it’s now a regular on the restaurant’s ever-changing menus. Smoked paprika is a staple flavouring in Spain and is what gives most chorizo its taste. You should be able to find it in any good food hall or Spanish delicatessen.


  • 2 tablespoons smoked sweet paprika
  • 4 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • 300g (11oz) shelled almonds, toasted
  • 1 cup roughly chopped parsley
  • 200g (7oz) feta cheese
  • 700ml (24fl oz) olive oil
  • 50ml (fl oz) lemon juice


Purée the first four ingredients to a coarse paste in a food processer. Crumble the cheese and add with half the oil and purée for 30 seconds. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the remaining oil and the lemon juice and purée for a further 15 seconds. Tip into a bowl and stir in salt to taste. If you want a thinner pesto, just mix in more oil.