Walnut Basil Pesto
Once you make your own pesto, you’ll wonder what took you so long. The beauty of this recipe is that you can tailor it to your taste. I don’t happen to like being overpowered with garlic, so I tend to cut back on it. I love the creaminess and richness I get from the garbanzo beans and walnut combination. I usually double the recipe; then I can freeze the leftover by rolling it up in plastic wrap into a log shape. Cover with foil and a freezer bag and it will keep for 6 months.
Total time: 10 minutes
- 1/4 cup walnut halves or cashews
- 1/4 cup pine nuts
- 1 can cannelini or garbanzo beans (I prefer these because of the creamier texture)
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2 1/2 cups fresh basil
- 1/2 cup fresh cilantro (if you’re substituting dried, use ¼ cup)
- 1/4 cup water
- 2 tablespoons (or more to your taste) nutritional yeast flakes
- 1-2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- Salt to taste
- Fresh black pepper (to finish)
- First, toast your nuts! Toast the walnuts or cashews for about 5 minutes, tossing them often. Then add the pine nuts for an additional 5 minutes. When you begin to smell the toasty nuts, they are done. Be careful to not burn them!
- Transfer toasted nuts to a food processor. Add the garlic and pulse everything into fine crumbs. Add the basil, cilantro, nutritional yeast and water, and beans and puree until relatively smooth, scraping down the sides at least once to make sure you get everything. Last but not least, blend in the lemon juice. Add more water as necessary for your desired consistency and thickness.