August 8, 2008

Vegan Spinach Pesto

Most pestos, as a result of the generous olive oil drizzle administered while blending, are high in fat. Although olive oil is a source of healthy fats, there is such a thing as too much of a good thing. So how do you reduce the oil without sacrificing the smooth texture? Simple. Add lemon.
Lemon juice not only adds the moisture needed for a smooth pesto, but it adds a vibrancy that can sometimes be lost in the earthy, warm flavor of basil. Not only that, but lemon juice helps to preserve the verdant green of this pesto, preventing unsavory discoloration.
Anyway, this is a variation on the wonderful cheese-less recipe created by Vegan Visitor. Her blog is absolutely wonderful and, as many people including Oprah now acknowledge, veganism is an excellent way to live healthier and greener (no pun intended). Even if you just give up animal products for just one meal, the benefits can be significant.

On a separate note, I just watched Gone Baby Gone. It is an excellent movie and I highly recommend it! I think Ben Affleck finally found his calling as a director (sorry if you are a big fan of his acting work, but I am not as impressed) and his brother, Casey, is an exceptional leading man. If you love crime mysteries with twists and turns out the wazoo, this movie is for you.

But enough of my shameless pandering. Here is the altered recipe and a link to VV for the original...

Vegan Spinach Pesto
Adapted from Vegan Visitor


  • 2 cups (packed) baby spinach leaves
  • about 1/2 cup of flat leaf parsley
  • 5 large basil leaves
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • pinch of freshly ground black pepper
  • juice of half a lemon
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil


  1. Pile everything but the oil into a food processor and combine well.
  2. Using a spatula, scrape the sides, then reattach the lid.
  3. With the motor running, drizzle in the oil through the feed tube 1/2 tablespoon at a time until everything is smooth but not oily.
  4. Yields about 1 cup.

Tomorrow: Homestyle bran bread with pepitas


dayna said...

Thanks for the kindness. I hope you enjoyed....