I think pesto is really underrated. It's such a great condiment, sauce, dip and flavor enhancer that I don't know why people don't use it every day like salt. Ok, it can be a little high in the calorie department, but I have a fix. This fix also helps those of us who are dairy free or vegan. Simply remove the cheese that most pesto calls for and you'll have a slightly lighter, but still equally impactful pesto. Seriously.
Garlic and pine nuts bring a strong flavor, and I love me some garlic. Make sure to toast the nuts first to get them primed for their full taste potential. You could also use walnuts if pine nuts aren't your thing. I'm a big fan of mint in my pesto. Mint brings a nice freshness to anything it touches, and it touches a lot of things in my kitchen (hello minty salads and drinks).
Make sure to follow the order in which I add the ingredients. Getting a nice potent paste together first will up the ante in flavor department of this vegan pesto.
Spinach keeps the healthy quotient high with all of its vitamins and nutrients.
I could and do eat this by the spoonful. If I'm having guests, I try and show a little more restraint so I'll serve the mint pesto over vegetables or fish or chicken. So many options. Luckily t's good enough, and healthy enough, to eat everyday!
Vegan Spinach Mint Pesto
- 2 garlic cloves, paper removed
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup pine nuts - lightly toasted
- 1-1/2 cups fresh spinach
- 1/2 cup fresh mint
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- Lemon juice squirt to season (optional)
- Place the garlic and salt together in a food processor and pulse until combined. Use a spatula to scrape down the sides and mix. Add the toasted pine nuts and scraped down the sides again before throwing in the spinach and mint. Pulse with the greens until blended. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil, using the spatula if necessary to combine all of the ingredients. Adjust the oil or seasoning if desired. Add a little lemon if you want to brighten it up a bit. Keep refrigerated for 3-5 days.
Need more pesto in your life, and I think you do, try my Seaweed Pesto.