Pesto Chango!

so cool. my grandma and aunts went to an ‘herb class’ while on vacation and came back with this pesto cheat sheet that they passed on to me. easy, quick pesto with all kinds of options, enabling you to be allergen free (NUT FREE! DAIRY FREE!) and use whatever you have on hand.

so, after we got back tonight from our own mini vaca, i used what i had from the garden and leftover in the fridge and made this: Basil Sunflower Seed Pesto with Peas and Spaghetti Squash.

here are the instructions provided by the herb class. what i used for mine is bolded.

1. choose an herb- with food processor running, drop 2 cloves of garlic in feed tube and turn off machine. add 2 cups packed fresh herbs, any of the following.
basil, parsley, tarragon/oregano/mint/rosemary (cut all of these last four with parsley or something because they are very intense)

2. choose a nut- add to food processor bowl 1/3 cup toasted nuts
-pine nuts, walnuts, hazelnuts, pistachio, pecan, cashews, sunflower seeds

3. select a cheese- add to food processor bowl 2/3 cup shredded cheese
-parmigiano reggiano, pecorino, provolone, asiago, (or dairy alternative- i just mixed a little coconut milk cream in to make a creamy pesto sauce)

4. add an oil- turn on food processor and pulse several times to chop and blend above ingredients. while running, add 1/2 cup oil to form a paste
EVOO, sunflower oil, safflower oil, almond oil, walnut oil

5. flavor your pesto- add one or several seasonings to taste. pulse several times to mix thoroughly.
-lemon zest, salt, pepper, cracked red pepper, oil-packed sundried tomatoes, green olives, capers

6. i then sauteed it for a while with the (already cooked, left-over) peas and spaghetti squash and served hot sprinkled with some nutritional yeast (yummy nutty cheesy flavor packed with B vitamins and other good stuff). if i’d had the time and the stuff on hand, spinach, onions, mushrooms, and other squashes all could have been good, too. i served it over the spag squash instead of pasta, although lately i’ve been using quinoa and brown rice pastas and feeling good about serving/eating it.

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