The benefits of walnuts, which are a nutrient-dense food, were among the first approved qualified health claims by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for a whole food for their positive effect on heart health. In addition to offering a range of wellness benefits, walnuts are great partners in the kitchen – they truly are the hardest working nut!
- 1/3 Cup shelled walnuts
- 2 cloves garlic
- 3 Cups loosely packed fresh basil leaves
- 2 Tablespoons Parmigiano-Reggiano
- Salt, to taste
- 1/2 Cup extra virgin olive oil
- Water (I use this to cut down on extra oil and it works great!)
Combine walnuts and garlic in food processor and process 20 seconds.
Scrape down the sides, add basil, cheese, and salt, and process until it has a paste-like consistency, about 1 minute.
Scrape down the sides again and, with blade running, slowly drizzle in olive oil.
Scrape down the sides again and add water as needed for desired consistency. (A thicker pesto is good to spread and a thinner pesto is good for sauces.)
Taste and add more of any ingredient as needed.
Use immediately and store remaining pesto in fridge for about a week or freeze.