Pesto is a great sauce for pasta and it’s a great change from tomato sauce. In order to make our pesto healthier, I make it with baby spinach leaves instead of basil leaves. At home we call it “Popeye Pasta” and the kids go crazy for it!
A food processor
A large bag or box of baby spinach leaves
Roast your pine nuts for a few minutes in the oven at 350 degrees. It brings out the flavor and takes away the rawness of the nut. Don’t forget to save some for a top garnish!
Fill your processor with the spinach leaves. Add a very small amount of olive oil at a time as you grind the spinach. I tend to use the pulse on this to check on how much olive oil I need and how well the spinach is being processed.
Add the pine nuts half way and process again. Add a small handful at a time, but generally, one small handful is enough for one portion of pesto sauce (for four people). Now would be a good time to add a touch of garlic if you want.
When your pesto is ready, the sauce should be a nice creamy consistency. Some people like to add their parmesan cheese here, but I add mine later when I am actually cooking the sauce.
|Our favourite pasta for this dish. Find it fresh or frozen
Pesto freezes so well and it’s a great staple to have on hand when you have an unexpected guest over for dinner. When I make pesto, I usually get another four containers to freeze along with the meal of the night. Remember, a little bit of pesto goes a long way!