I’d be embarrassed to tell you how long it took me to finally find the time to make pesto with the five very overgrown plants I had in my yard. I coerced my neighbor to come and help me pick the leaves with the promise of dinner. There was a LOT to pick and he was justly rewarded.
I love pine nuts but I REFUSE to pay $20 or more for a pound for them. Plus, because I eat a fair share of tree nuts I’m trying to find ways to integrate more seeds into my world. AND… because I used raw nuts, it makes this more nutrient dense. Win, win, win…all around.
1/2 cup of pepitas (raw pumpkin seeds)
1/4 c. raw sunflower seeds
1/8 c. raw hemp seeds
2 cloves of garlic (more if you like it)
2.5 cups (packed) basil leaves
1/8 c. cold pressed extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt to taste (approx. 1/4 tsp.)
*typically folks add Parmesan cheese to their pesto. I don’t. Feel free to add it before (or after) freezing.
Add the seeds and garlic to a food processor fitted with an “s” blade and pulverize into a fine consistency. Add basil leaves and process until everything is completely incorporated.
Note the seed mixture in the bottom of the carafe.
Add olive oil and salt and pulse to combine. It will eventually mix up into a large ball shaped mass.
When you take it out this is what it will look like.
Keep in mind this is not a “traditional” pesto with lots of olive oil. It’s more like a basil/seed paste but I find it super easy to freeze when it is this consistency. You can add what you want later on to thin it out. In this form the flavor is pretty intense. From here I roll the pesto paste into 1-2 tablespoon balls then toss them in a pie pan (because it was what was handy) and then into the freezer overnight so that they freeze individually.
This way I can pull them out one at a time as I need them. When they are frozen, toss them into a container and pull them out as needed. They need about 15 minutes to defrost. Don’t microwave them. I despise microwaves!
RECIPE DISCLAIMER – My recipes are intended to inspire you to think on your own. Sure…follow them to the “T” if you’d like, but understand if you prefer more of less of an item that is listed, go for the quantity YOU desire. All my recipes are assembled to please MY palate. Any parenthetical notations are meant to get you thinking off of the page, and into the pantry. Use your imagination!