Bright, fresh and full of basil, this pesto is different than most thanks to a cup of spinach and a few leaves of fresh mint. I think you will agree, this pesto brings out the best in any pasta, pizza crust or as a topping for a slice of crusty bread. It's easy to make in the food processor and is ready to serve in minutes.
By Melinda O'Malley Keckler, CrinkledCookbook.com
2 cups fresh basil
1 cup fresh spinach
1 tablespoon fresh mint - about three large mint leaves
1/3 cup pine nuts
1/3 cup shredded parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon fresh garlic
1/2 teaspoon salt
freshly ground pepper, to taste - or about 1/4 teaspoon
1/4 cup olive oil
Place all ingredients, except the olive oil in a food processor and blend until you get the ingredients chopped into very small pieces. Add the olive oil and blend again until smooth. Use with pasta, on pizza or as a spread on warm bread.
Here's a stellar recipe to use fresh pesto, Three P Salad, it's delicious and perfect next to grilled burgers, chicken or as a side dish any time. Are you on the lookout for a good pasta sauce? You must try my Tomato-Cream Sauce. Like this pesto recipe, it's super easy to make and despite having "cream" in the name, don't worry about calorie overload. It's a cream sauce that's actually light on the cream, but heavy on flavor from fire-roasted tomatoes.
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Pine nuts are definitely on the spendy side, but fortunately, this recipe only needs 1/3 cup of the pricey little gems. I usually buy about two cups worth of pine nuts at a time - gulp- and keep them in the freezer until I'm ready to make this recipe. It doesn't make them any less expensive but that way I only deal with the sticker shock once in a while. Many store-bought pesto sauces include walnuts with the pine nuts so that is a nice option too, though adding walnuts does adjust the taste. Let me know what you think of this recipe in the comments below!