Nut-free Purple Basil Pesto

I have a whackload (yes that’s a word) of beautiful dark opal basil growing in the backyard and I love it.  I use it in recipes or as a garnish as much as possible and it’s been growing wildly all summer.  This weekend we made flat-bread and wanted pesto instead of tomato sauce (which I made from our garden tomatoes a few weeks back, and it was the bomb. And I don’t even LIKE tomato sauce).

So out I went to the garden. I make it sound like it’s a hike to get there. It’s probably 20 feet from my sliding door.  Whatever, point is, I have cool shit growing in my garden.

I don’t even like pestos.

I know. You’re probably thinking why the hell not. What did they ever do to you, you ask. Nothing – but I am not a fan of the nuttiness for some weird reason. I love nuts, but not pesto. I’ve made a few in the past and I am not a fan. Alas, somehow I wanted a pesto on this flatbread. So I had a whackload of beautiful purple basil that was green around the edges… so beautiful and a huge bag of lightly roasted pumpkin seeds. I normally buy raw, but Costco had a sale. Don’t judge me.

I threw this pesto together and it’s awesome. Nut-free, it’s perfect for anyone with allergies. It’s flavourful and has great texture without the overpowering pine nuts. It’s also an awesome dark purple colour which looks friggin cool spread on anything. No, it’s not weird.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup fresh packed purple (and green if you have it) basil
  • 1 tbsp raw apple cider
  • 2-3 cloves of really good local garlic, chopped
  • ½ cup good quality olive oil (more if you like a wetter pesto)
  • 1 ½ cups of pumpkin seeds (if using raw (pepitas), ensure you soak those bad boys for 2 hrs as it helps break down the phytic acid which reduces our bodies ability to absorb the wicked awesome nutrients of the raw seeds).
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tsp Himalayan salt

Directions

Combine all ingredients in your handy-dandy food processor.  Blend until smooth.  May take up to 10 minutes of blending/scraping/blending.  I like mine smooth, so I keep blending and adding olive oil until it’s the right consistency.  Taste along the way and add salt/honey if needed.  If you like it chunkier, blend only for a few seconds.

Enjoy!