Pesto is one of my favorite flavor profiles to tinker with. Not only does it go well with anything you toss, spread or serve it with, pesto is extremely forgiving! It seems that no matter what you throw in the food processor, as long as there is a bounty of fresh basil and garlic, it’s going to taste fab!!!
One of my go-to summer meals that I could eat over and over is a bowl of pesto pasta with fresh tomatoes and parsley, mozzarella cheese and glass of sangria! :)
This recipe uses cashews because of the silky texture they give the pesto! It’s important to soak them so they blend smoothly. If you haven’t tried a pesto made with cashews, you’re in for a treat! Pine nuts are typically the traditional choice, but walnuts, pecans, almonds and cashews all add interesting and varying flavors!
This pesto is especially interesting as it’s dairy free! That’s right, no cheese! Tahini is the secret ingredient to this pesto, it adds the cheesy, salty flavor you would normally gather from Parmesan.
Spread this thick and rich pesto on bread, pizza, toss with pasta served hot or cold or even as an interesting component to a salad!
Give this recipe a try and let me know what you think! :)
Makes 1 cup pesto
1/4-1/3 cup fresh lemon juice (depending on taste preference)
1/2 cup raw and unsalted cashews (soaked in hot water for 5 min then drained)
1 cup fresh basil leaves
1/3 cup fresh parsley leaves
1/2 tablespoon maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons tahini
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
In a 4-cup food processor, add all the ingredients. Blend until pesto is thick. Add a little warm water, one tablespoon at a time until pesto is smooth.