He was a Tarragon Of Virtue.
Last post I discussed roasting your own pumpkin seeds. That was step one. Once I had toasted all those seeds, I started snacking. Holy delicious…and dangerous. Before I knew it, half the seeds were gone! I knew I needed to find another creative use for them…my stomach would thank me, too.
As I flipped through one of the many food magazines littering the kitchen counter, I came across pumpkin seed pesto. At least, I thought I came across the recipe. When I went to find it again, it didn’t exist. Maybe I had a divine vision from the culinary gods, maybe I had an unrealized craving. Whatever the reason, I scoured the internet to find something that matched what I thought I had read.
Pesto is one of those foods that you either love, or hate. I happen to be in the ‘love’ camp. I especially like that this one uses cilantro, rather than basil. I have been on a huge cilantro kick as of late. Cilantro reminds me of summer, and because our weather has been distinctively winter-like, I am in denial and acting out through food. I guess there are worse ways to act out.
I love this pesto. It’s fresh, tangy, and has a hint of toasted deliciousness from the pumpkin seeds. I didn’t remove the shells from the pumpkin seeds when I made this, even though the original recipe said to. I like the toasted flavor they imparted, and I think it adds a great texture. But, if you want to remove the shells, then by all means please do so. I plan to slather this delicious sauce all over a batch of shrimp, and perhaps make tacos, or a very daring pasta dish. Oh the possibilities.
Pumpkin Seed Pesto
Adapted from Epicurious.com
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup water
2/3 cup pumpkin seeds (shelled or unshelled; I used unshelled, since I love that roasted flavor)
1 bunch cilantro leaves and stems
2 garlic cloves
1 tablespoon (or more) fresh lime juice
1 small spicy pepper of choice, or 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon honey
- In a blender or food processor, pulse pumpkin seeds, cilantro, coriander seeds, garlic, and pepper in a food processor until coarsely chopped.
- With machine running, gradually add the lime juice, 1/4 cup oil, 1/4 cup water, and honey.
- Blend until coarse purée forms. Season pesto to taste with salt, pepper, and more lime juice, if desired.
- Enjoy anyway you wish. Over pasta, on bread, with a spoon….