Brazil nuts take this pesto down a new delicious path! They offer a nutritional dose of selenium and protein, and combined with walnuts this pesto also offers those important omega 3 fatty acids. But, beyond all these healthy benefits, this pesto tastes terrific, and is a complete breeze to make! Recipe by Dreena Burton.
In a food processor, combine nuts, garlic, lemon juice, salt, pepper, olive oil, water and basil and puree until fairly smooth. Puree less for a chunkier texture, or longer for a smoother texture. At this point, refrigerate pesto in a covered container until ready to cook pasta.
Once ready to use, cook pasta according to package directions. Just before draining, remove about 1/2 cup or so of the cooking water and set aside. Drain pasta (don’t rinse it!) and toss with the pesto, using as much or as little pesto as you like. If the pasta is a little dry, add more pesto, a few tablespoons of the pasta cooking water, and/or extra olive oil.
Season to taste with additional sea salt, black pepper, and fresh lemon juice as desired. In the summer, top this salad with fresh, ripe sliced cherry tomatoes!
Note: You can use 3/4 lb. of pasta, or up to 1 lb. if you like, you simply may need to add extra cooking water or oil to help spread the pesto through the pasta. Try wheat-free pastas, such as brown rice, spelt, or quinoa pasta.
Note: You may need extra water for this pesto once you toss it through the pasta. Instead of adding extra water directly to the pesto blend, you can instead reserve some of the pasta cooking water and add that to pesto and pasta once you are combining the two (as explained in directions).
Note: Use any leftover pesto to spread on pizza crusts, slather on crusty breads, dollop on soups, or mix with sandwich fillings!