Easy pesto recipe | Lifehacker
Green, peppery, bright green pesto is one of those things that we can put on anything, you could put it on a rubber shoe, and it would probably still taste delicious. It’s usually made with fresh basil, pine nuts, Parmesan, garlic, and olive oil, but did you know that you can actually make pesto from almost anything?
Use this easy pesto recipe with anything green and leafy
That’s right: You can make green pesto from almost anything. All you need is a leafy herb (or leftovers, like radish leaves or carrot tops), walnuts of your choice, and grated salty cheese. This technique is useful when basil is not in season and pine nuts are sold out, or when you have a lot of green leaves. I can’t claim lineage — it’s a variation of a recipe I clipped from a flyer years ago — but it’s been a saving grace when I need to whiz through an abundance of fresh herbs.
The basic ratio is 1:2:2:8 (1 part nuts, 2 parts oil, 2 parts grated cheese, 8 parts leaves or herbs), plus garlic, lemon, salt and pepper to taste. Allow me to prove:
First, start with a few cloves of garlic. One or two will do the trick. Pulse a few times until almost chopped.
Add two cups of fresh leaves or fresh herbs. Some starter suggestions: basil, cilantro, kale, carrot heads, parsley, spinach, mint, arugula (or a combination of a combination of things).
Add half a cup of oil. I usually use extra virgin olive oil because I like the flavor, but you can try any oil that has a nice but mild flavor, like avocado oil, flaxseed oil, or walnut oil.
Add a quarter cup of nuts of your choicePine nuts, walnuts, pecans, almonds, pistachios, cashews…the options are endless. Toast them if you wish.
to throb And blend in your food processor (a blender will work in a pinch) until smooth.
Add 1/2 cup of any grated cheese you want. Plus Parmigiano-Reggiano, Pecorino, Asiago, Romano, Grana Padano or Roncal will all work.
Mix until the cheese is just combined. Add the juice of half a lemon, and season with salt and pepper. Taste and ask yourself: Does it need more acid? More salt? More pepper? Do I want to be thinner? (If so, just mix in a little oil.) You’re done!
Add it to whatever suits your taste. Of course it’s great to add to pasta, but pesto is also a great flavor booster when stirred into soup, tossed under the skin of chicken, or baked over fish fillets.