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Tuesday, June 9, 2015
What is pesto good for?
Let us count the ways!!!
Use on pasta, spaghetti squash, add to hearty soup such as minestrone, spread on tomato or mushroom sandwich melts, use as salad dressing (thin with olive oil and lemon juice), spread on chicken or beef before grilling or baking, in frittatas, on crusty bread heated under broiler, add to burgers when making or grilling, on grilled tofu, eggplant, cauliflower, broccoli, asparagus, spread on pizza crust before adding rest of ingredients.
Share how you use pesto and we will note this on our website and send you a free recipe for our Pasta Pesto!
The basil in the garden was in fine form this
morning. Time to make pesto!!
I harvested the basil and then washed it carefully.
Then, we assembled our ingredients.
Piñolis, walnuts or pecans?
Pesto is traditionally made with piñolis or pine nuts.
You can easily substitute walnut or pecans for them.
There is very little different in taste from the piñolis and
you save quite a bit of money, as they can be a bit pricey.
Are you adding Parmesan?
A good quality olive oil is drizzled into a food processor while the rest of the ingredients are processed. Many people add Parmesan cheese, however, it is easy to make it vegan, dairy free or pareve by substituting nutritional yeast for the cheese. For a lighter taste, add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.
¾ cup extra virgin olive oil
½ cup walnuts, pecans or piñolis
2 large cloves garlic
2 cups fresh basil
½ teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, optional
½ cup Parmesan cheese, grated, optional
Put all ingredients for pesto in a blender or food
processor and blend until smooth. Substitutions are below.
VEGAN: Substitute ½ nutritional yeast for parmesan cheese in pesto sauce.
GLUTEN FREE: Use a gluten free pasta.
DAIRY FREE: Substitute ½ cup nutritional yeast for parmesan cheese in pesto sauce.
ALLIUM FREE: Omit garlic in pesto sauce.
Taking the garlic skin off
Two large garlic cloves are needed. Removing the skin is simplified when you press down on the garlic with the flat side of a French knife. The skin peels off and the garlic is ready to use!
When all is puréed, add salt and pepper to taste. The pesto lasts in the refrigerator for up to a week and can be frozen. Try small zip lock bags or ice cube trays for easy defrosting later. Drizzle a little olive oil on top before freezing to prevent discoloring.