Pesto, spinach pesto    and red pepper pesto

Quick and easy to make at home! Each of these is perfect with pasta for a quick and easy dinner or lunch. I also like to throw in a grilled chicken breast to add some protein. If you store in an airtight container it will keep for up to a week in the fridge. 

Pesto

Ingredients

Method

  1. Put a dry frying pan on a low heat and add pine nuts, toast for 2/3 minutes then remove from heat

  2. Put the basil, parmesan, garlic and pine nuts into a food processor and season well

  3. Blitz together and with the motor still running, slowly pour the oil in until the pesto thickens

Spinach pesto

Ingredients

  • 25g basil

  • 25g baby leaf spinach

  • 20g pine nuts

  • 20g grated parmesan (you can use pecorino or a similar vegetarian hard cheese)

  • 1 crushed garlic clove

  • 75ml olive oil

  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Method

  1. Put a dry frying pan on a low heat and add pine nuts, toast for 2/3 minutes then remove from heat

  2. Put the spinach, basil, parmesan, garlic and pine nuts into a food processor and season well

  3. Blitz together and with the motor still running, slowly pour the oil in until the pesto thickens

Red pepper pesto

Ingredients

  • 1 red bell pepper or 1 large red sweet pepper (de-seeded)

  • 30g basil

  • 20g pine nuts

  • 20g grated parmesan (you can use pecorino or a similar vegetarian hard cheese)

  • 1 crushed garlic clove

  • 75ml olive oil (plus around 1 tsp extra for peppers)

  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 220oC (fan), slice pepper into large chunks and place skin side down on baking paper, drizzle over some olive oil and some salt. Place in oven for arund 15 minutes (edges will start to curl and the skin touching baking paper should start to blacken) Remove from oven.

  2. Put a dry frying pan on a low heat and add pine nuts, toast for 2/3 minutes then remove from heat

  3. Put the pepper, basil, parmesan, garlic and pine nuts into a food processor and season well

  4. Blitz together and with the motor still running, slowly pour the oil in until the pesto thickens

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