I have an allergy to dairy, and so I try to recreate recipes to suit my needs. Traditionally, pesto requires a lot of Parmesan cheese, and so I found the best replacement: nutritional yeast! It has the most amazing cheesy flavour and so I’ve started using it in a lot of my recipes. Food yeast provides vitamin B12, iron, and packs 8g of protein per 1/4 cup. It is gluten free, wheat free, soy free, sugar free, vegan, vegetarian — it can even do a dance if summoned. (Kidding, but it’s basically amazing!)
I also find the price of pine nuts astonishingly expensive, so I substitute sunflower seeds instead. Easy on the taste-buds, easy on the wallet.
2 heaping handfuls of spinach
1 handful of basil
1 clove of garlic
1/3 cup sunflower seeds
1 lemon, juiced
1/2 cup nutritional yeast flakes
1/2 cup olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
Combine all ingredients except for the olive oil into a blender (food processor works best) and blend as much as possible.
Keep the processor/blender going and slowly add the olive oil until well combined.
Season with salt and pepper and blend until combined.
Enjoy on pasta, sandwiches, eggs — whatever!