This stuff’s versatile! It’s good with everything from pasta to quesadillas (a word that Chrome wants to “correct” to peccadilloes, which tickles me). My 6 year old likes to dunk chips in it and eat it like a dip or salsa.
This is one of those non-measuring kinda recipes. You go by taste. I tend to just chuck stuff in until I’ve got something I like. The measurements that follow are rough at best. FYI – requires a food processor.
- 2 cups fresh cilantro, stems and all
- 1/4 cup roasted pinenuts (I’ve used raw pinenuts as well, and the end result was good times)
- 1/4 cup parmesan cheese or parmesan cheese substitute
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 2 cloves minced garlic
- 6 tbsp olive oil
Again, these measurements are just starting guidelines. Add more salt. Add less pepper. Mess with the garlic. You name it – whatever tastes good to you. Regarding the parmesan, Food Whole sells a pre-shredded vegetarian (vegetable rennet) variety as well as a soy based fake version.
Anyway, chuck your pine nuts into your food processor and pulse ’em til they’re like a very coarse meal. Add the cilantro, garlic and parmesan and pulse away til everything’s nice and chopped up. Pour in 4-6 tablespoons of olive oil, salt and pepper and pulse away. Continue pulsing, and if necessary adding oil, until you’ve achieved your desired consistency for pesto. Taste it during this process – you may want to add more salt or pepper.
Try jazzing it up with something hot, like a pinch of chipotle powder or a little sriracha. Or make it tangier with a bit of lemon juice. I’ve even considered sneaking a little pineapple into the mix. Make it your own!