I can’t get enough of this rich and creamy pesto sauce. It is so versatile and always adds a delicious touch to any dish! Tonight I spooned it onto a pizza, but I also like it tossed with potato gnocchi or pasta, stuffed into phyllo triangles, or spread on a sandwich. The options are virtually endless! Pesto couldn’t be easier to make if you have a food processor, and it is truly worth making from scratch if you can get fresh basil.
- 1 large bunch of basil (about 3 cups, loosely packed)
- 2-3 large cloves garlic
- 6 Tbsp raw pine nuts or walnuts (or a combination of the two)*
- 3/4 – 1 tsp salt, or to taste
- 6 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast (optional)**
Place all ingredients except the olive oil and nutritional yeast into a food processor. Process to a finely ground consistency. Add olive oil and process again, until smooth and creamy. If desired, add nutritional yeast and process again until creamy. Serve immediately or store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
*Classic pesto is made with pine nuts, but it is also delicious with walnuts! Tonight I was short on both so I used about 3 Tbsp of each. I haven’t tried it with any other nuts, but if you experiment and find a good one, let me know!
**Nutritional yeast is a delicious addition to this classic pesto and will give it a kind of “cheesy” flavor and a more rich and creamy consistency. If you buy Red Star Vegetarian Support Formula nutritional yeast, it is also a reliable source of vitamin B-12. Some people don’t like the taste of nutritional yeast, others (like me!) can’t get enough of it. If you haven’t tried it before, I recommend experimenting with small amounts to see how you like it.