Perfect Pesto

Thursday January 10, 2013


I had a lot of fun (read: ate a lot of pizza) when creating the recipe for Pesto and White Bean Pizza. I love using pesto instead of tomato sauce on pizza, especially when I'm in the mood for something on the lighter side (or my heartburn has been acting up). Plus, it's easy to make a large batch in your food processor in just a few minutes, and then you can keep it in your fridge for a few weeks. Besides pizza, it's also great on pasta and sandwiches, even in soup or cooked with chicken or fish.

It's also fun to experiment with interchanging the ingredients--classic pesto calls for olive oil with garlic, basil, pine nuts, and Parmesan cheese, but most of those ingredients can be replaced. I've used spinach, arugula, broccoli, artichoke, kale, and sun-dried tomatoes instead of or in addition to basil; walnuts, almonds, and hazelnuts instead of pine nuts; and Manchego, Gruyere, or for a creamier texture, goat cheese, instead of Parmesan. You can also add spices to give it more complexity, like paprika for a smoky flavor, or omit the cheese if you don't want dairy. There are so many different combinations! What are the most unconventional ingredients you ever used that produced a delicious pesto?

Don't miss these great pesto recipes for putting on pizza and beyond:
Sun-Dried Tomato Walnut Pesto Recipe
Vegan Artichoke Pesto Recipe
Green Garlic Pesto Recipe
Hazelnut Pesto Recipe
Kale Almond Pesto Recipe
Goat Cheese Pesto Recipe
Spinach Pesto Recipe

Image by Devorah Lev-Tov


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