Edible Monterey Bay

PESTO SAUCE

PHOTOGRAPHY BY CRYSTAL BIRNS

from Crafty Condiments

You can turn almost anything into a delicious pesto. In a high speed blender, add herbs, oil, garlic, an acid such as lemon juice, seeds (pumpkin, sunflower or hemp) or nuts (toasted pine, walnut or almond), salt and Parmesan cheese if you eat dairy. Otherwise, add nutritional yeast for a cheesy flavor. Aromatic herbs are in full swing during the summer. Good ones to make into pesto are basil, mint, dill, tarragon, cilantro, pea shoot and parsley. You can add vegetables like spinach, kale or arugula to bulk it up and increase the nutrient factor. There is no wrong way to make a pesto, just work with what is available, either using a single herb or various raw herbs and greens. In pestos, herbs and greens are never cooked.

PESTO SAUCE

2 bunches of herbs, or 1 bunch of herbs and 1 bunch of greens
4 cloves raw garlic
1/3 cup nuts or seeds
½ cup fresh Parmesan cheese or ¼ cup nutritional yeast
½ cup oil
½ cup lemon juice (most recipes don’t call for lemon juice but I find it helps preserve the herbs)
¼ teaspoon sea salt

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