As promised in my very first instalment of Monday Munchies on – yup – Monday, here is how I discovered and became addicted to PUMPKIN SEED PESTO.
I’m not going to deal in precise quantities for this one, as I really just threw stuff together in experimental fashion. Feel free to play around with the ratios to suit your taste. Also, don’t worry too much about bulk: you can make as much or as little as you like in one go, it’s so quick and simple! You can easily just make more if, like me, you taste it and find that you need it at, say, EVERY MEAL. The basic ingredients are:
- pumpkin seeds
- extra virgin olive oil
- basil (although I have been making – and loving – a basil-free variety. Sometimes I replace it with a teaspoon of peanut butter to make it extra creamy)
- nutritional yeast
Start off by dry roasting your pumpkin seeds in a pan for a couple of minutes. You’ll know they’re done when they start smelling lovely and fragrant and turn slightly brownish.
Transfer them to your food processor. I’ve read a lot of big-time food blogs insist that you need to invest in a good food processor if you want to eat clean, but I don’t necessarily agree. I have a cheap and cheerful handheld little number and it worked just fine.
Add the garlic and a generous swig of olive oil…
… And pulse until it all combines into a coarse paste.
Add the basil…
… And a few tablespoons of nutritional yeast. This stuff is magic; I’d heard about it but hadn’t tried it until recently, and since then I’ve been putting it everywhere. With its cheesy, nutty taste it’s a great substitute for Parmesan and you can sprinkle it on pasta, soups, stews… the possibilities are endless! It’s also a much healthier substitute for cheese: nutritional yeast is completely natural and one of the richest natural sources of the B-group vitamins. Give it a try.
Pulse your mixture until it’s as smooth as you like it (or as smooth as your processor will allow hehe).
If you’re not eating it straight away (good luck with that), you can store your fancy new pesto in a glass jar – just be sure to cover it completely with olive oil to keep it fresh and yummy.
And now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to go slather some on the pork steaks I’m having for dinner.