Fresh herbs are so much more than a garnish! They are packed with antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. Using the entire bunch and making it into a fragrant pesto makes these herbs last longer and can be incorporated into any number of dishes, including salad dressings or adding it to a marinade. Sometimes I choose to use a traditional mortar and pestle to make pesto, there's something comforting about making this without any gadgets or machinery. But of course, using a blender, herb chopper, or food processor easily works (and is much quicker too!)
3 cups fresh basil, cilantro, spinach or kale
1-3 stems garlic scapes, or regular garlic cloves
1/4 cup blanched slivered almonds or sunflower seeds, optional
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 tsp sea salt, plus more to taste
1/2 - 1 lime, juiced or 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp nutritional yeast
Optional: For a little spice, add 1 serrano or Jalapeño chile
Coarsely chop the garlic scapes. Heat one tablespoon of the olive oil in a small frying pan. Gently sauté the garlic for 2-3 minutes until fragrant. Transfer into the mortar.
Add the sea salt and pound into a paste. Coarsely chop the cilantro and pound again into a paste You may need to do this in batches, if necessary.
Add the slivered almonds and pound again, breaking up the pieces until incorporated.
Gradually add the remaining olive oil while pounding again until smooth.
Finally, add the lime juice and season to taste.
Serve with fresh greenmarket sugar snap peas and radishes
IN A FOOD PROCESSOR
Blend all the ingredients together into a smooth paste. Add more olive oil if you prefer a runnier consistency.