Monday, August 27, 2012

Preserving Summer

I can't believe we're about to enter the very last week of summer. I'm just not ready to say good-bye to picnics in the park, morning farmer's markets and sundresses. Won't you please stay?

To counteract the reality of the changing seasons, I've been stocking up on excessive amounts of my favorite fresh herbs. Pestos, infused oils and homemade sauces lend themselves perfectly to "preserving summer".

Pesto is one of my favorite spreads to make because anything goes.

My rendition is a somewhat healthier take on a classic, as less oil and cheese is used. And, the baby arugula adds a nice spice. Believe me, there's no lack in flavor.
Basil and Arugula Pesto with Cashews
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup roasted cashews, unsalted
3 cups fresh basil
2 cups baby arugula
1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon course salt
1 teaspoon cracked pepper
1 cup olive oil
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon lemon juice, fresh squeezed

Place the garlic and cashews in a Vitamix blender, or food processor, and combine for 10 seconds. Add basil, arugula, red pepper flakes, salt, pepper and olive oil and puree until smooth. Finally, stir in Parmesan cheese and lemon juice. Season with additional salt an pepper, to taste.

This recipe makes two generous cups of pesto. I divided mine into small containers to freeze for later use.

*Image via this is glamorous

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