Farm-fresh vegan pesto!
Adapted From allrecipes.com
This pesto is dee-darn-licious. It is high in protein, thanks to the nutrtional yeast, and can be used to dress up soups, salad dressings, spreads (like hummus), or slathered in mass quantity on crackers or bread. You can also replace the nutritional yeast with Parmesian cheese if you’re a pesto purist. This pesto can also be frozen in batches to bring summer flavors back in the wintertime. Try it with spaghetti squash or tossed with your favorite root vegetables for a summery tasting treat.
1/3 cup pine nuts
2/3 cup olive oil
1-2 cloves crushed or minced garlic (more if you’re warding off vampires or a cold, less if you have a meeting in the following 24 hours)
1/3 cup nutritional yeast
1 bunch fresh basil leaves
Sea salt and pepper to taste
Sprinkle pine nuts into a skillet over medium heat, and cook, stirring constantly, until lightly toasted.
Allow to cool.
Gradually mix the pine nuts, olive oil, garlic, nutritional yeast, and basil in a food processor, and process until smooth.
Season with salt and pepper.
*You can replace the nutritional yeast with grated parmesian cheese if you eat dairy.
*This recipe can be frozen in ice cube trays, small ziplock bags or plastic Tupperware containers and used for future reference.
Basil: Basil contains flavanoids called orientin and vicenin, which protect us at a cellular level. It also has anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. Basil is also high in vitamin K, so is great for our blood health. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.
Nutritional Yeast: Nutritional yeast is a staple source of protein, particularly for vegans and vegetarians. It is one of the few non-animal sources of B-12, is rich in folic acid and other nutrients and amino acids. Nutritional yeast is free of the Candida Albicans strain, making it safe for those concerned with candida. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.
Pine Nuts: Pinenuts are excellent source of B-complex vitamins such as thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, vitamin B-6 (pyridoxine) and folate. They also contain healthy amounts of essential minerals like manganese, potassium, calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc and selenium. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.
Olive Oil: Olive Oil is packed phytonutrients including polyphenols. Most of the polyphenols in olive oil function as both antioxidants and anti-inflammatory nutrients in the body. When eaten in moderation, olive oil can be very beneficial to our gastrointestinal and cardiovascular health. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.