However, because I am a total pesto noob, I decided to combine 2 recipes for a custom, slightly more ‘gentle’ version. Thus, using half basil and half spinach :). If you know someone who is unsure whether they like pesto or not because they’ve only had it as a garnish, then this would be the pesto for them. You can replace the almonds with just pecans, or the pecans with just almonds if you want. Make sure you roast your nuts! It’s not the same without roasting. Roasting nuts is easy .. just pop them in the oven or toaster oven at 350*F for about 10 minutes, more or less (8-12) depending on how hot your oven runs. As soon as you can smell them, take them out.
The recipe can also be easily doubled. As is, it makes about a 2/3 cup of pesto; which is perfect to flavor a regular, ~400 gram box of pasta.
(sorry about the poor photo quality btw .. just got a new camera for Christmas and it unfortunately does not work with Photoshop for retouching yet, and our apartment lighting is horribly yellow 😦 )
Spinach and Almond Pesto:
(makes about 4 servings – 2 heaping tbsp each)
- 1 cup baby spinach
- 1 1/2 cups fresh basil
- 2 – 3 cloves of garlic
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup grana padano (or other fresh parmesan cheese), grated
- 1/8 of a lemon, squeezed (can also use about 1 tsp of lemon juice)
- 3 tbsp almonds, roasted
- 1 tbsp pecans
- dash of nutmeg
- salt and pepper to taste
- Place all ingredients into a food processor or high-power blender; oil first, followed by greens, cheese, nuts, spices, and lemon.
- Process for about 1 minute.
Note: The finished product should be slightly grainy, a bit more coarse than almond flour.
Nutritional Info (1/4 recipe / about 2 heaping tbsp): 188 calories, 19g fat (3g saturated), 3g carbohydrates, 1g fiber, 4g protein