Pesto is a staple in our home. We usually make it at least a couple times a month. I'm very a much a throw together cook versus a recipe follower. Sometimes I'll scour through online recipes to get an idea about what the ingredients would be and then I just start putting stuff together, making substitutions if I don't have everything on hand. Classic Basil Pesto is my preference, but each season I plant a few radishes and give the radishes away (our family doesn't like them) and use the leaves to make some Radish Pesto!
The first time I made pesto with radish leaves was during my Farmer's Market gig aka "Good Hope Growers." To market about the only produce I had available, I gave Radish Pesto samples on crackers to each passerby. My babe developed a curious love for this pesto. He is certain at different times of the year, there is a deficiency in his body that only Radish Pesto can nourish. I feel flattered by his body's apparent "need" for my pesto. Here is my Basic Pesto Recipe with optional substitutions.
Basic Pesto Recipe
1 - 1 1/2 C. Sweet Basil or other Tasty Edible Leaves
Cilantro, Radish Leaves, Parsley, Other varieties of Basil
1/2 C. Nuts
Pine Nuts, Almonds, Cashews, Macadamia....I don't recommend walnuts and I've never splurged on Pine Nuts personally
1/2 C. Fresh Ground Parmesan
I have used that pizza shaker type...but it is real gritty and not as tasty, but in desperate situation it works
1/4 - 1/2 C. Olive Oil
The amount will depend on your Food Processor, use the amount needed for it to blend smooth, Of course I recommend Organic Extra Virgin Cold Pressed for the highest nutrition value
1-2 Cloves Garlic, Pressed
To your garlic breath preference, If you only have Garlice Powder or Salt use 1-2 tsp
Sea Salt & Ground Pepper to Taste
Again, basic S&P will work here
1. Depending on your Food Processor, I prefer to grind the nuts first to make sure they get chopped up into fine powder. I use the Magic Bullet, but a Food Processor works OK too.
2. Add to the nuts: Leaves, Parmesan, Garlic, S&P.
3. Pour Olive Oil over the mixture, starting with 1/4 c. and begin blending.
4. Blend until smooth, adding additional Olive Oil if necessary to blend.
How we use Pesto:
As a sauce in a hot bowl of pasta and sauteed veggies
As a sauce over chicken, fish, or portabella burgers
As a spread in Tortilla Wrap sandwiches
As a Dip for crackers or fresh vegetables
Nothing beats HOMEmade.
I would love to hear your thoughts if you try the recipe or if you have your own.