The Dao Does… Super Green Pesto You Will Love to Hate
Pesto is and will always be one of my favourite condiments and sauces to use in nearly every dish. It’s just so darn versatile; you can stir it through pasta, pop it on top of a searing steak, use it as a salad dressing, a base for a herby-sauce, and spread on your toast with some avocado and poached eggs…Yum!
One thing that really grinds my gears about store-bought pesto, is #1 the price and #2 the sheer degree of unhealthy-vegetable oils it is made with that can rage havoc in our bodies when ingested.
Another thing that really grinds my gears is that sad-looking bag of spinach in the back of the fridge that was bought a week ago, with all good intentions. You can’t always make friends with salad…So today I give you a super-duper easy, ‘oil-friendly’ recipe that uses up all of your leafy greens. This recipe doesn’t require much effort at all, as long as you make a deal to cook and someone else cleans!
- blender or food processor
(if you’re really fancy you could get a full workout in and use a mortar and pestle. I tried to use the NutriBullet once for easier cleaning, but it couldn’t handle it).
- ⅓ cup of pine nuts, cashews, or macadamias
(you can choose to use any type of nut and seeds that you fancy. I have found that the three listed above work best for flavour and texture, but I have also tried walnuts and pistachios, the pesto became slightly more bitter.
- garlic (The more cloves the merrier).
- ¼ cup – ½ cup of EVOO or Avocado Oil
(the amount will depend on how thick you prefer your pesto, anywhere between ¼ cup-½ cup should be plenty).
- ½ cup of parmesan cheese or nutritional yeast
- ½ of 1 lemon (squeezed)
- 2 bunches of basil picked and washed & your leftover leafy greens
(you can also choose to add in any herbs you like, coriander and parsley are also delish! Just be careful with adding raw kale; apart from being a little more fibrous-y, some studies recommend blanching it first before consumption for easier digestion).
- salt and pepper to taste.
- Place all of your leafy greens, basil, garlic, parmesan/nutritional yeast, and nuts in the food processor first. I like to put the blender on ‘pulse mode’ to not ‘over-do-it’ on the nuts, as I prefer my pesto slightly textured.
- Pour in the EVOO or other oil of choice and the lemon juice slowly whilst it blends. You may find that you will need to stop midway and scrape down the edges of the bowl. (Depending on how thick you prefer your pesto, you may also need to add more oil to create a smooth consistency).
- Salt and pepper to taste, and that’s it!
You can keep your pesto in the fridge for up to a week and freeze any remaining pesto in some ice cube trays that you can easily pop out and defrost before use.
By Clarice Berry