Dinner Time

Cost Conscious Homemade Pesto

Pine nuts. Parmigiano . Fresh basil. Fancy olive oil. Well, there goes my checking account. Making homemade pesto is so easy and delicious, but can costs a pretty penny. The Beard felt inspired to come up with a more cost conscious pesto and voila! Secret ingredient? Peanuts. Yes, peanuts! It sounds weird but it was delicious. 

homemade pesto

We use our Cuisinart Food Processor to mix up this all purpose sauce/dip/condiment, but if you don’t have one that’s okay! You can use a blender or if all else fails, use a mortar and pestle. You’ll get real old school with that last method. Technically the original way to make pesto was with a mortar and pestle, hence the name pesto. Fun fact. homemade pesto

The nice thing about this recipe is that you can swap out the nuts and greens for another variety you’d like. The ratios will stay the same, so get creative! Another tip for saving a little green. Use what’s on sale or in season. That will always ensure that you’re getting the best prices. 

DSC_0401GARLIC. Based off this recipe and my roasted garlic and potato bread recipe, I must admit that I absolutely love this ingredient. I think it makes everything better and just a little more flavorful. Come to think of it, this pesto would go fabulously on that homemade bread. 
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Pesto goes a loonnngg way. Which is great because it’s delicious. But, you also only need about 2-4 tablespoons if you are using it for pasta. Whenever you are done with it, put the leftover pesto in a glass container or jar and cover in a layer of olive oil before closing it up until the next use. Other ideas for this tangy condiment? Lather it on a sandwich will all your favorite veggies and then pop in the oven for 2-4 minutes. Dreeeammmy.  

DSC_0406Mix up your pesto recipe and let us know how you use it! You might even give us a few new dinner time ideas. 
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Cost Conscious Homemade Pesto
Yields 2
A tangy, delicious condiment that won't break the bank.
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Ingredients
  1. 3 cups arugula
  2. 1/2 cup olive oil
  3. 4 medium sized garlic cloves
  4. 5 tablespoons parmesan
  5. 2 1/2 tablespoons peanuts (not roasted or salted)
  6. the juice of half a lemon
  7. salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Dump salt, pepper and garlic in food processor. Pulse until chunky.
  2. Add arugula, pulse until well blended.
  3. Add peanuts, pulse until well blended.
  4. Add parmesan, pulse until well blended.
  5. Squeeze in fresh lemon juice (careful not to get any seeds in there) and pulse until pesto becomes creamy and well combined.
  6. Spoon it out and use on your favorite pasta, sandwich, cheese, whatever you're feeling!
Notes
  1. You can substitute various nuts and greens for the peanuts and arugula.
The Beard And The Baker http://www.thebeardandthebaker.com/

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