Friday, June 7, 2013

Nut-Free Pesto Sauce

I've always wanted my own herb garden and one of these times I'm actually going to make good on my threats and actually plant one!  (I admit gardening intimidates me.)  Last year, however, our generous neighbors shared their bountiful harvests with us, and one of the things I ended up with was basil.  A WHOLE LOT of fresh basil.  So I made pesto.  Love, love, love pesto!  It was kind of funny because for like a day, maybe two, after making a whole lot of pesto, my hands smelled like basil and garlic and they smelled so good I could've eaten my fingers. (Ok, kind of weird, I sound like Augustus Gloop from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.) Pesto is great to spread on sandwiches (see recipe below), pizza, pasta, garlic bread-- and freezes well so you don't have to worry about using it up all at once.


Nut-Free Pesto Sauce
From Egg Free Bakery, adapted from Our Best Bites

2 1/2 – 3 cup basil leaves, gently packed
3/4 cup fresh Parmesan cheese, grated
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2-3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
kosher salt
a few cracks pepper

Place everything but olive oil in a food processor. Pulse a few times until everything is hopped up. While food processor is running, very slowly pour in olive oil until you reach the consistency you want.  Use as desired.

Freezer Instructions:
Pesto freezes well.  One way to freeze it: portion pesto into the sections of an ice cube tray.  Freeze. Once it’s frozen pop all of those cubes out and transfer to a zip-lock bag or freezer container. Pull them one out whenever you need them!



Chicken Bruschetta Sandwiches
From Egg Free Bakery

4 tomato slices
4 slices mozzarella cheese
2 chicken breasts, cooked and sliced
Pesto Sauce

Split rolls in half.  Spread a tbsp or so pesto sauce on bottom half of roll.  Top with chicken, tomato and cheese.  Broil under broiler just long enough to melt cheese and slightly toast sandwich if desired.  Serve with fries or vegetables.  Yield 4 sandwiches.

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