Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Currently Craving: Pesto :)

As the weather gets warmer,
so do my cravings for lighter more "summery" meals.

Vegan pesto sauce over some brown rice pasta is definitely one of them!

Okay, not completely vegan, I usually add butter to the pasta, but here is my absolute favorite (and easy) recipe for pesto sauce :)

You'll need:
2 cups of tightly packed fresh basil leaves
4 finely minced garlic cloves
1/3 cup pine nuts
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt & pepper

1. Chop basil in food processor or blender
2. Add garlic, salt, pepper and about half of the pine nuts and blend again
3. In a dry pan, brown the other half of the pine nuts and add them to the blender
4. Blend, while slowly adding the olive oil, until it makes a smooth paste
5. Add more olive oil if sauce is too dry

The sauce will keep for about a week, but also freezes very well :)

As for the nutritional benefits of the ingredients
Basil has antibacterial and anti-inflamatory benefits as well as offers vitamins iron and calcium
Extra Virgin Olive Oil contains Vitamin E and EFAs, which serve as good fats, especially helping your skin
Garlic is an antioxidant, working in many different ways
Pine Nuts contain good protein and monounsaturated fats

Wonderfully fresh tasting, without all of the icky fat from piling on the cheese!

Lets get growing that basil! :)

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