In all fairness, pesto doesn’t really require a recipe. Combine some greens, cheese, and nuts in your food process and combine. Simple enough, right? That said, certain pestos are more successful than others, and this was a successful pesto. Instead of expensive pine nuts, I substituted some inexpensive but delicious Spanish peanuts. A combination of basil and parsley made for something a little more interested and versatile than simple basil pesto. So far this week, we’ve eaten this on some sautéed gnocchi and tomatoes (pictured) for a delicious dinner and as a spread on a dressed-up grilled cheese. It has a burst of fresh flavor from the basil and flat leaf parsley with the hint of salty, cheese-y nutty goodness that makes pesto shine thanks to the peanuts and cheese.
Basil and Parsley Pesto
Yield: About 2 cups pesto
4 cups fresh basil, loosely packed
1 cup fresh flat leaf parsley, loosely packed
1/4 cup Spanish peanuts
1/4 cup Romano cheese, freshly grated
1/4-1/2 cup olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
Place peanuts in a food processor. Run for about 20 seconds until very finely chopped. Add cheese and pulse a few times to combine. Add basil and parsley and pulse 10-15 times until finely chopped and well combined with nuts and cheese. With processor running, slowly drizzle in olive oil until a paste forms. Taste and add salt and pepper to taste.