Thursday, July 18, 2013

Spinach Pesto

 Everyone needs a good quick pesto sauce recipe! Trust me on this one, it's yummy. 
There is a secret ingredient that you might never guess. Go ahead, read on and tell me if you guessed it! Dare ya ;)
I'm keeping this short and sweet today, enjoy!!!

As you can see I buy my spinach in bulk. Costco has yummy spinach, and LOTS OF IT, for cheap. I'll get that and make 4-5 batches at once. This is my favorite go-to sauce, for loads of options. It's especially good on those days spent at the pool, where we run home just in time to get dinner on the table as Mr. Chef walks in. It's like I had been slaving for hours over a fresh hot cooked meal :)

 To start, let's make one thing VERY clear...this is easy peasy.  
 Blend all the above ingredients, minus olive oil, together in your blender or food processor until creamy. Slowly add oil, while blending. 
Pour into ice cube trays or tupperware for storage. 

For some reason pesto will discolor after you freeze it. I don't honestly know why. To avoid it, simply pour a very thin layer of oil on top of the pesto in the container. 

This freezes really well or goes great on sandwiches, pizza, wraps, pasta...the options are endless! Maybe i'll do a pesto week next week and give lots of ideas for how to use your pesto? Anyone interested?

5 C loosely packed, fresh spinach
1/4 C Lemon juice
1-2 tsp grapefruit zest (any citrus will do but the grapefruit adds a really fun zing)
1/2 C pine nuts, toasted
1/3 C Olive Oil
salt and pepper to taste (I usually add about a full tsp of salt and 1/4-1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper)

Toast pine nuts in oven or toaster oven. spread them out in a single layer on a cookie sheet and toast at 250 degrees for 5-8 minutes, just long enough to enhance the flavor. When you open the oven door, you should be able to smell them. 
Place spinach (no need to de-stem but make sure it's washed well), lemon juice, pine nuts and grapefruit zest into blender or food processor. Blend until smooth. While still blending slowly add oil until well mixed. I usually prefer Olive Oil, however, this past time I made this I ran out of Olive Oil so I substituted Canola Oil. Whatever vegetable oil you have should work just fine. My personal preference is Olive. Add salt and pepper to taste. Use with your favorite recipe.

Optional use: Pour prepared pesto into ice cube trays or tupperware. Cover with a very thin layer of oil to preserve the bright green color while frozen. Freeze immediately.

PS - Did you guess the secret ingredient? Who would have thought, grapefruit pesto!?

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