finally i made a vegan pesto and am posting the recipe. wanted to make it when my dear friend S was here a couple of months ago, but just did not get enough time to make the recipe. i wanted to make it especially for her, but alas!
this recipe of pesto is dedicated to my dear friend S. she had even told me how to make it. i missed her when i made it and even more when we would have the pesto. its so easy to make it.
before we start… for all those who do not know what a pesto is….
pesto is a sauce from italy made with crushing basil leaves, pine nuts and garlic blended in olive oil and cheese. read more about pesto here.
it can be had with pasta, sauted or boiled vegetables, salad or even as a topping on toasted breads/buns.
traditionally pine nuts are used to make pesto, however one can use other nuts like almonds, cashew nuts, walnuts. feel free to add your choice of nuts.
the pesto is healthy… as we add nuts, garlic and olive oil to it… almonds gave a nice texture and flavor to this pesto and just think of the goodness of almonds…. as indians we all know it…. right?
this is one is vegan pesto as i have not used any cheese. also i have added whole black peppercorn. if you don’t have whole peppercorn then substitute with black pepper powder.
having an indian taste, the pesto reminded me of the various herb chutneys we make in india like the mint chutney, coriander chutney. at least for me it tasted like a chutney… and in the west its called a sauce… what a world?
i remember having european and american visitors to the house and when they would see any indian chutney… they would call it a sauce… like coconut chutney would be coconut sauce… lol!!!
in my mind, i have a different perception of sauce… for me a sauce would be liquidy and smooth and soft… like a tomato sauce or pumpkin sauce… but calling coconut chutney, a coconut sauce is beyond my comprehension and common sense….
enough of my ramblings… lets begin…
to make pesto all you need is some fresh basil leaves and some garlic.
and roasted almonds. i roasted the almonds in a pan… but you could toast them in an oven too…
now add roasted almonds, peppercorns, garlic, basil leaves in a food processor or blender.
add some olive oil and blend these to make a paste. scrape the sides and blend again. add the remaining olive oil too. for the last batch i added some salt and blended. just to let you know i have used less oil as i did not want the pesto to be very oily.
and hey your pesto is ready…..
put it in a container and the pesto stays for a week in the refrigerator. one can also freeze the pesto in cubes and then use the cubes later.
enjoy the pesto….