Mealtime Mama: Pauline’s Pesto


Pauline, the produce manager at Ozark Natural Foods, offers all kinds of great advice and recipes on the cooperative’s website. We noticed her pesto recipe on the site recently, and since ONF sponsors Mealtime Mama, we thought we’d share it here!

Paula says it’s definitely time to make pesto — and she likes the recipe below not only because it’s delicious, but because you can also make it vegan if you don’t do dairy.

Pauline’s Pesto

basil, ONF
Organic basil at ONF

½ lb fresh basil leaves
1 ½ cups walnuts
1 4oz container of parmesan cheese
3 ripe avocados
7-10 fresh cloves garlic
Olive oil
Braggs amino acids

Directions: De-stem the basil and mix leaves, walnuts, cheese, avocado, and garlic cloves in a large bowl. Fill up the food processor and add small amounts of olive oil, braggs, and if you need a little splash of water (to help with the processing). Eyeball it each time and taste as you go. I enjoy this variation for several reasons, the avocado makes the pesto soooo much more creamy and the Braggs adds a lot of flavor. For a non-dairy version substitute the cheese for 3 more avocados and add a little more Braggs for a salty flavor. The only real difference is that it will brown faster.

Pauline adds: Between the basil special and the slicer tomato sale, I have been filling my freezer with pesto and my pantry with tomato sauce. Last weekend I put up 22 jars of just plain tomato sauce. Simply chop up the tomatoes, cook down for about 20 minutes and add salt to taste, then immediately place in wide mouth mason canning jars and let sit until the lid seals. With so many tomatoes to chop I didn’t want to add other ingredients right now but rather make a base sauce that I can turn into salsas, pasta sauces, or soup bases later.

ozark-natural-foodsOzark Natural Foods is a locally owned consumer cooperative dedicated to participatory democracy. Its mission is to provide owners and the Northwest Arkansas community with natural and organic products that encourage healthful living and a sustainable planet. Click here to become an owner, which has all kinds of special benefits! New on the ONF website: The Fresh Flyer features products in the ONF Fresh departments weekly. These products are on sale or are seasonal. Click here to see the latest.