John D Lee is a chef and restauranteur living and working in Chiang Mai, Thailand. He's always loved to cook.
Green Onion Pesto Recipe
Green onion pesto—some call it a poor man's pesto. But it's perfect for those days when pine nuts are a touch pricey or when fresh basil is just out of season and not available.
I actually like it better, but it's sort of a different beast, and although you could use it as a pasta sauce, I like it as a garnish, stirred into mayonnaise, or serve it at the restaurant as a topping for crispy, fried sweet potato fritters.
The itemized recipe as follows does give amounts, but please take the quantities as given with a grain of salt. This is a terrifically easy recipe that consists of a few good ingredients thrown haphazardly into a blender. It's a taste-as-you-go kind of process and one that should be started and finished within about 2 minutes! It goes (almost) without saying as well that this recipe is well open to modifications, interpretations and complete changes in direction!). Leftover pesto will last a few days covered in the fridge.
- One big bunch (about 1 pound) of green onions trimmed to remove the white bottoms (you only want the less assertive greens here)
- 1/4 cup of shelled sunflower seeds
- The juice of 1 to 2 limes
- 1 clove of garlic (don't even bother to peel it—just pop er' into the blender!
- 1/4 to 1 cup of vegetable oil (or any mild tasting oil) Using less will result in a thicker pesto, one that can be formed as a garnish. Using more oil will result in a more sauce-like pesto—a la traditional basil/pine nut pesto.
- Salt to taste
- Chop the green onions roughly and toss into the blender along with the nuts, the garlic and the lime juice.
- Turn on the motor and drizzle in the oil until the desired consistency is reached
- Season to taste with salt
- The end
Do this once, and you'll see how open to adaption this technique/recipe is.
- switch the green onions with cilantro
- try it with olive oil and lemon
- try it with different nuts
- mix it with sour cream for veggie dip
- toss it on hot pasta
- keep it thick and spread on toasted baguettes for sandwiches
- toss it with simply steamed new potatoes
- use it for a 10-minute dinner as a coating for simply broiled white fish fillets
There are endless variations. So good, so easy.
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michigan on April 21, 2012:
This sounds tastier than regular pesto! Thanks x 3!
Kavita Kapoor from London on September 26, 2010:
Ooh this sounds yummy!
I'm going to try this, thanks for sharing