Recipe

Basil Pesto with Peanuts

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This pesto recipe uses peanuts instead of the traditional pine nuts, adding a unique toasty flavor. If you do not like or cannot eat peanuts, go ahead and substituted a different kind of nut, such as walnuts or almonds, or leave out the nuts entirely and add an extra tablespoon of parmesan cheese. Make a couple of batches and freeze the extra, so you’ll have it on hand for a quick dinner. It’s delicious tossed with hot pasta or used on pizza.

Yield :  3 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 cups fresh basil
  • ¼ cup salted roasted peanuts
  • ¼ cup Parmesan cheese
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • ¾ cup extra virgin olive oil

Instructions

  • Place basil, peanuts, cheese, garlic, and a sprinkle each of salt and pepper in a blender; pulse several times. Add half olive oil and pulse again.
  • Gradually add remaining olive oil while blending on low speed.
  • You can freeze extra pesto in ice cube trays, then store in an airtight freezer bag.

Featured Ingredient:  Sweet Basil

Sweet basil is most commonly paired with tomatoes, and in the summertime, there isn’t much that can beat a fresh tomato slice with minced basil. Yet basil complements a wide variety of delicious foods. With such versatility, it’s an excellent herb to grow yourself. Not only will doing so be more cost-effective than buying it at the grocery store, but you’ll be able to pick just the amount you want when you need it. Basil can be grown in a small pot on a windowsill inside for several months. For more abundant harvests and variety, grow a few different types in a container or in a garden bed outside. Basil is a warm weather plant, but it also stores nicely when pureed with water or oil, or turned into pesto, then frozen. For the fullest flavor when using in a hot dish, add fresh basil within the last 5 or 10 minutes of cooking time. Learn how easy it is to grow your own basil.

How to Grow Basil: growing basil plants in herb garden
You can grow a lot of basil in a vegetable garden, where it is handy for a big harvest to make pesto. This is sweet basil.