Hello & Happy New Year lovely folks!
I'm so excited to share with y'all this delicious nutritious recipe! I don't usually measure things out but today I made one of the most amazing pestos I've ever had the pleasure to make and I measured everything just to share with y'all!
A huge passion of mine related to herbalism is making delicious creations that feed both my belly and soul and nourish the people around me. Pesto is one of the first things I remember learning about making in a herbal way so many moons ago at the beginning of my herbal journey. It's also one of the herbal medicines that's most ingrained into my routine. If I'm ever hosting a party at my house, this is one of my favorite appetizers served along side radishes, carrots, & celery. It's also my favorite on the go snack, that I don't ever road trip without honestly. I usually make pesto in bulk and freeze it in small portions, to unfreeze as I need so that I never run out of the green goodness.
The main ingredient in this recipe utilizes a Florida Native "Weed" that most people would have in their lawns if they stopped mowing! Dunh, dunhna, duh, Biden's Alba! or Spanish Needle, Shepherd's Needle, Beggar-ticks, Amor Seco, Romerillo, Pega Pega, Picao Preto, Black Jack, the names could go on and on!
This might be the most easily learned plant to forage and grow in your own yard with zero effort on your part I may say. It grows year round and all parts of it are edible. Its antibacterial, antimalarial, anti fungal, super mineral rich. If you know any Florida Herbalists, then you know this plant, as this is a favorite for 100% of the herbalists I know.
It's most recognizable by its flowers, which are photoed decorating a pesto if you scroll down. But I like to harvest the Biden's leaves when they are in the younger state, before they flower as photoed above. When they are younger, the leaves are less bitter and astringent and easier for people to digest in larger amounts. You can use any wild green to your liking though, I'm sure a dandelion pesto would be downright delicious.
Without further ado, Here's the recipe for the Green Goodness!
Biden's (Or any green "weedy" plant allies) Pesto
3 cups Biden's Alba Leaves
2 cups Moringa Leaves
2 cups Radish Greens (I also love using carrot tops!)
1/2 cup Garlic Chives
2 cups Sprouted Pumpkin Seeds
2 cups Olive Oil
3/4 cup Apple Cider vinegar ( or could use juice from 1 lemon)
1/2 cup Nutritional Yeast
Sprinkle of Salt
Using the flowers of Biden's Alba and Mooring leaves to decorate the top of a freshly made pesto!
I washed all the greens from the yard and then blended everything together in a food processor. Add more or less of any ingredient listed and feel free to play around! Pesto is one of my favorite solvents to get a whole bunch of greens into my diet. I sprouted the pumpkin seeds by soaking in water for 1 hour and then rinsed and dried them. I only dried them because I soaked the seeds a few days before making the pesto, but if you are soaking the seeds and making the pesto on the same day no need to dry them!
Also, I chose to use pumpkin seeds because I making this pesto as a gift for an upcoming herbal class meet up and nuts tend to be big allergens for people. In the past I've used cashews, almonds, pine nuts, walnuts, basically any nut that I like to eat. I've heard pistachio makes a real scrumptious pesto! Another allergen for people is citrus, hence why I used apple cider vinegar instead of citrus for the tart touch, but feel free to play around here too!
Other things I used in the recipe but don't list in the ingredients are I used a Garlic Rosemary infused Apple Cider Vinegar and a Biden's Alba infused Olive Oil. By using herbal infused solvents in my pesto, I'm putting even more herbal power into this pesto, but it is not at all necessary for a delicious pesto.
Let me know if you have any questions, & most importantly have fun!
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