Sunday, August 19, 2018

Vegan Basil Lime Pumpkin Seed Pesto

Pesto on shiritaki noodles garnished with tomato wedges
Add Ripe Tomatoes for Contrast

Recipe by Robin

Lately I’ve been cutting down on dairy products, and more specifically my favorite: cheese!  I love the stuff, but everything from speaking to sleeping is smoother without it. Also, my husband’s new paleo-keto-ish eating plan inspired a new kind of pesto with this summer’s basil crop. Pumpkin seeds are a prominent part of both keto and paleo diets, being low-carb and traditionally hunter-gathered. Their earthy flavor combined with aromatic basil and tangy lime makes cheese both unnecessary and undesirable. Plus, they’re a good source of zinc, magnesium, Vitamin E, and fiber.

Enjoy this easy-to-make pesto over any pasta, including the carb-free shiritaki noodles featured in these photos (I used fettuccini, but angel hair would also compliment the pesto). Spaghetti squash is another great pesto vehicle. Do include some seasonal veggies, like local tomatoes, chopped cucumbers, roasted peppers, and/or steamed green beans or zucchini for extra color, flavor and texture. Or, skip the noodles and serve the pesto as a dip for fresh veggies.

Olive oil, basil, limes, pumpkin seeds and garlic
Great Green Summer Ingredients
Basil Lime Pumpkin Seed Pesto

1 cup raw pumpkin seeds
1 cup packed basil leaves
4 tbsp. fresh lime juice
3 cloves garlic
3 - 4 tbsp. olive oil
¼ tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper

In a medium skillet, lightly toast pumpkin seeds until fragrant.

Cool seeds till just warm, then pour into food processor. Pulse until seeds just stick to the processor walls.

Add basil, lime juice, garlic cloves, 3 tbsp. olive oil, salt and pepper. Process until smooth.

Taste and adjust seasonings. You might want to add the extra 1 tbsp. olive oil, especially if the surface of your pasta is dry (shiritaki noodles and spaghetti squash are typically wetter than grain pastas). Pulse to combine.

Turn pesto out into serving bowl. Serve with noodles and/or veg of your choice. If using as a dip, you could add an olive oil float by making a well in the center and adding another tablespoon or two of oil.

Pesto mixed into noodles and tomatoes
Mixing Up Pesto with Shiritaki Noodles and Tomatoes

pumpkin seeds in skillet
Toasting Up Pumpkin Seeds

closeup of pesto topping shiritaki noodles, garnished with tomatoes
Flavoring Up Pasta with Pesto and Veggies

No comments:

Post a Comment