Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Mmmm ...Pesto!

As a lover of basil and mint and a frequent shopper at T n T Market I often pick up their packages of herbs for only a few dollars. The problem is that I do not use it fast enough and usually it goes wilted, mushy or brown. Now that I also have 3 basil plants and two types of mint plants I am again faced with the same problem. I love mojitos but with the amount of mint I have it might just force me to become alcoholic. So thus I have come up with another solution that used the random ingredients in my fridge. PESTO! Yay! 

Most pesto recipes ask for pine nuts and parmesan. I seldom have either of these in my fridge, especially since pine nuts are currently $60 a kilogram (*gasp*), so I have altered the ingredients a bit. It ends up very delicious!

Basil Pesto
1/4 cup almonds
1/3 cup feta cheese (Or another hard cheese... I imagine asiago or manchego would taste pretty nice)
3 garlic gloves
A few handfuls of basil leaves 
2 tbsp olive oil
salt, pepper and chilli's to taste

Put the first three ingredients in to food processor and blend till smaller chunks. Add the oil and basil. Blend till pieces are really small and it makes a paste. Season to taste. Makes about 1/2 cup or so.... enough for 4-5 servings of pasta.

This works well on pasta or as a seasoning for meat. If i have no use for it yet I freeze it in small containers for a day when I need dinner in a rush. 

Mint Pesto
A few handfuls of mint
1" of fresh ginger- sliced
2-3 tbsp lime or lemon juice
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp salt (or to taste)
1 tsp sugar (or to taste)
chilli's- optional

Blend in food processor till smooth. Enjoy on fish, chicken, lamb or other meat. Makes about 1/3 cup. This can also be frozen for another day. 

Basil Pesto ready to go

Basil Pesto on spinach noodles...yum!


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