Add a little twist to your classic basil pesto by replacing pine nuts with almonds. Quick, easy to prepare and simply delicious!
Nothing better than a simple pasta dish with a homemade basil pesto. It works anytime of the year, for any occasion. A simple pesto can turn pasta into a sophisticated dish, in less than 15 minutes to prepare. Even if you have no time to spend in the kitchen, there is no reason not to make your own pesto. It tastes so much better than a canned one purchased in a grocery store! All you need is to be equipped with a food processor.
Each time I prepare a basil pesto, I wonder if I should share it on the blog. It’s basic and extremely simple, yet so delicious. Feeling uncomfortable with sharing such an easy recipe, I postpone every time. Today however, I get the perfect excuse to share a basil pesto recipe with you as I added a little twist to the original version. Instead of pine nuts as the recipe requires, I used slivered almonds this time. The idea pleased me straight away, as the pine nuts can bring some bitterness to the pesto sometimes. Slivered almonds don’t, which makes the pesto subtle and delicate with a perfect flavor of nuts.
You might wonder here why I went for slivered almonds instead of whole almonds. The answer is simple: it’s easier and quicker to grind in the food processor. Using whole almonds would take more time to get the same result. If however you have only whole almonds at home, do not worry, it works too. Just keep in mind to pulse a little bit more and a little bit longer until you get the perfect pesto texture: crushed enough.
Now you could also go crazy and add your own twist to this already twisted recipe, using hazelnuts for instance, or even walnuts if you wish. You might need to adapt the recipe a little bit regarding the proportions but the idea is here. Replacing the pine nuts with other nuts, here almonds. Don’t get me wrong, I like the classic basil pesto with pine nuts, but find it interesting to change from time to time. In my opinion, the almond version will never disappoint you, you can go for it with confidence.
Summer is here and you will be happy to know that there are many different ways to use pesto in your recipes, not only pasta. You can simply prepare some bruschettas with basil pesto and diced fresh tomatoes on top, with or without cheese (mozzarella, goat cheese…). You can also spread some basil pesto on the bottom of your pizza, as for the Broccoli, feta, and red onion pizza that you can find on the blog already. Others also use basil pesto as a dressing instead of vinaigrette for some salads.
There are various reasons for you to prepare your homemade pesto. Remember to pour it into an air-tight container – preferably a glass jar – and store it in the refrigerator for up to one week. Another option is to prepare more than you need and simply freeze it for up to 3 months.
- 2 cups fresh basil leaves
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ cup slivered almonds
- ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- ½ cup olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- Combine the basil, garlic, almonds and parmesan cheese in a food processor, and pulse a few times until coarsely chopped.
- While the food processor is running, gradually add the olive oil. Add more or less, depending on the desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- Store in a air-tight container and refrigerate for up to one week.