Tuesday, 5 February 2013


In search of a little something special that will wow your next dinner guests, but that's also easy to throw together in a jiffy? Look no further than homemade pesto!

After putting off making my own pesto for months, I finally gave it a shot. And, it's one of the best culinary decisions I've ever made! It was quick, easy, and oh-so-delicious.

This recipe is inspired by a kale and oregano pesto by Sunflower Kitchen that I purchased earlier this month. However, my recipe includes arugula instead of kale and oregano, and raw cashews and almonds instead of sunflower seeds. Note that this pesto is also dairy-free. While I'm not anti-dairy, I have been avoiding the stuff as of late (as I continue to experiment with a Paleo diet, etc.). However, I don't doubt for a second that this recipe would be made even more delicious with a good quality Parmiagano Reggiano or Pecorino Romano cheese. Try it.

Arugula Cashew Pesto

4 cups arugula, thoroughly rinsed
3 cloves garlic
1/2 cup raw cashews
1/2 cup raw almonds
1 cup olive oil
salt and pepper, to taste

1. Combine all ingredients in a food processor until forms a smooth paste. Add more olive oil for a more fluid consistency.

2. Enjoy pesto immediately or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to one week.

Storage Notes: Transfer your pesto to an airtight container and cover the top of the mixture with more olive oil. This top layer of olive oil will help preserve the flavour and colour of your pesto. Keep in mind that a fresh pesto like this one will, on average, keep for about a week, but could keep for longer. Another great way for storing pesto is to transfer it to an ice cube tray (again, topping each "cube" of pesto with olive oil) and freezing. Once frozen, you can remove the cubes from the tray and transfer to a plastic bag, which can then be kept in the freezer for later use.

Try This: Using arugula, cashews, and almonds instead of kale, oregano, and sunflower seeds (or instead of the usual basil and pine nuts of a classic pesto) made me realize that there are so many other variations of pesto that you could make. Why be boring? Mix your greens, herbs, nuts, seeds, and oils, and try something new! Let me know what other lovely combinations you discover!

DISCLAIMER: I am not a nutritionist, physician, or any kind of health professional. Everything that you find on my blog is based on my own knowledge and opinion. If you require specific health and fitness advice, please seek a qualified health professional.

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