I think it is safe to say summer is over in Toronto 😭😭😭. Which means my basil plant needed to find a good home before the first frost hit. And by ‘find a good home’, I mean ‘be turned into food’ (‘cause I am too lazy to keep it this condo gardening thing going all winter long). So I whipped up a batch of this basic vegan basil pesto. And then a fancier roasted red pepper pesto.
I keep it in the freezer so it’s ready whenever I need a quick hit of flavour: on hot pasta for a quick meal, marinate some chicken, or use it as a spread for wraps or sandwiches. But our favourite way, is to spread it on homemade pizza as a base instead of tomato sauce. Divine!
1 cup basil leaves (tightly packed into the cup)
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup pine nuts
1-2 cloves garlic
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
Salt & pepper to taste
Throw all the ingredients into a blender and blend till it forms a smooth paste. You may also add water a teaspoon at a time if it needs help blending. I pour the pesto into ice cube trays and freeze. Then I just store the frozen cubes in a ziplock until I need them. Makes about 1 cup of pesto.
For the roasted red pepper pesto: throw a red pepper on the grill (or in a 400*F oven) and let it roast, turning occasionally, till black all over. Like really really black. When done, place it in a paper bag and close it up. Let it cool. Once cooled, the skin should peel right off. Peel and remove seeds. Take the flesh and add it to the blender with the rest of the pesto ingredients and blend away!