Basil is tasty. It's also expensive. Here's how to extend your pesto recipe without compromising taste or nutrition! It also works for many specialized diets, including low oxalate.
Step 1: Ingredients
Any basic pesto has:
1. Basil -and lots of it!
2. Garlic - fresh of course
3. Cheese - generally parmesan. To make this vegan, cut this out or substitute with nutritional yeast
4. Olive Oil- usually extra virgin
5. Nuts- traditionally pine nuts aka 'pignoli'
Now most of these ingredients are cheap, or at least are already available in your kitchen. But basil is always my hold up- it's got to be fresh, so you can't stock pile it, and compared to other greens it's much more expensive. Pine nuts can also be pricey when you consider the over-all price of a meal. So how do we extend or replace these ingredients?
1: Let's use some other greens! Basil is a very flavorful plant, and if you mix it with a mild green, all you taste is basil! For this Instructable, I used kale. More on that later.
2: Mix in some Thai basil. You can buy it in bunches at Asian markets, for cheaper than sweet basil.
3: Use a different nut. Specifically a nut butter. It's cheaper, goes farther, and makes for a smoother consistency.