Seriously… who doesn’t love pesto??? It is one of those dishes where simplest is almost always better and you are free to experiment with endless possibilities of flavour combinations. The classic pesto pasta is a big hit in our house. I usually combine the pesto with hot spelt or wholemeal wheat pasta and a generous scattering of chopped sun ripened tomatoes or a selection of lightly steamed green veggies like broccolini, snow peas or asparagus.
Traditional pesto requires a large bunch of herbs along with pine nuts and parmesan cheese… all of which can be really expensive and not easy to come by. My pea pesto recipe can be made from humble frozen peas mixed with a conservative amount of basil and mint (the quantities you could easily find in your own herb garden).
Frozen peas are a great item to have on hand in your freezer. They are cheap and usually excellent quality with the peas picked and frozen quickly to retain their nutrients. Peas are an important part of a plant based diet. They are a good source of Protein, Folate, Iron and Manganese, and a very good source of Dietary Fibre, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin K and Thiamin.
- 1 cup defrosted frozen peas
- 1/2 cup almond meal
- 1 handful mint leaves
- 1 handful basil leaves
- 1 clove crushed garlic
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon savoury yeast flakes
- salt and pepper
- optional: 1/4 teaspoon lemon zest or dried chilli flakes
- Blitz all ingredients together in your food processor until just combined.
- Keep some texture in the mixture.
- You don't want the texture of hummus.
- Stir through hot pasta with a couple of tablespoons of the pasta cooking liquid.