Spinach Pesto

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A cool summer nights, tiki torches lit, crisp white wine, and laughs after reuniting with an old friend made for the perfect Tuesday night this past week.  It was so wonderful to see my friend Jen after quite a few months.  There is nothing quite like sharing stories over good food.  Since I hadn’t seen Jen in what felt like forever, I invited her over for dinner, figuring the peace and quiet of my apartment would make for better conversation than a crowded restaurant (not to mention I had a boatload of fresh basil to use up).  When I am in more of the mood to entertain, rather than cook, and am blessed with more fresh basil than a small Italian town would know what to do with, only one recipe will do:  my spinach pesto.  Unlike typical pesto, this one is loaded with the nutrients of spinach, which seems to blend in perfectly with the robust basil.  With less olive than typical pesto recipes and the use of fresh almonds, this recipe is a nutritionally sound addition to any chicken, fish, vegetable, or pasta.  There is nothing quite like visiting with an old friend especially when crisp white wine and the bright flavors of pesto are involved.

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Ingredients

  • 2 cups of fresh basil
  • 2 cups of fresh spinach
  • 1/2 cup of water
  • 1/3 cup of olive oil
  • 1/4 cup of raw almonds
  • 1/4 cup of grated Parmesan cheese
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • Servings: 12
  • Difficulty: easy

Directions

  • Soak the almonds in 1/2 cup of water for about 30 minutes, this helps soften them
  • Place the basil, spinach, garlic, almonds, and Parmesan cheese in a blender
  • Add 1/2 of the olive oil and half of the water and begin to blend
  • Slowly add the rest of the olive oil and water as needed until a thick pesto sauce forms
  • If sauce becomes overly watery, add more basil and spinach, if it becomes too thick, slowly add more water
  • Serve over your favorite fish, chicken, pasta, or vegetables

Nutrition:

  • Calories:  66
  • Carbohydrates:  1 gram
  • Protein:  1 gram
  • Fat:  7 grams

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