Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Sunny and Simple Pesto Ideas

There's nothing like fresh pesto on steaming pasta or as part of a delicious pizza! Also, you cannot beat pesto as a bread or veggie dip that is brimming with garden yumminess. The beauty of pesto is that you can eat it fresh or freeze it in small serving sizes. My mother and I often whip up enough pesto for the present meal as well as enough to fill the cubes of an ice cube tray. Once pesto is frozen in cubes, it can be popped out and transferred to another storage container. Presto, you now have pesto frozen in single serving amounts and you can thaw as needed!

Here is a basic pesto recipe:

1/4 cup nuts (walnuts, pine nuts, sunflower seeds, etc.)
2 cups packed chopped raw herbs/greens (basil, kale, parsley, cilantro, etc. Best if only one type is selected)
1/2 cup grated hard cheese (Parmesan, Romano)
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice (or other citrus)
1/2 teaspoon sea salt (regular salt may be used, but sea salt tastes WAY better)
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Pulse all ingredients in a food processor or blender until smooth. DONE and done. Serve and enjoy!

Whole Foods recently published the following pesto combos:

Classic: pine nuts + basil + Parmesan
Sunny: sunflower kernels + parsley + Ramano
Omega-3: walnuts + kale + Manchego
Southwest: pumpkin seeds + cilantro + Vella Dry Jack
Vegan: cashews + arugula + 1/4 cup nutritional yeast

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