A little trivia for you! The Pecan Tree is the State Tree of Texas. Growing up in Texas, there were always pecans around. Our grandfather had a huge pecan tree in his backyard and it seemed as if he was always sitting around cracking pecans in his rocking chair. There is a mild sweetness to pecans which makes them so delicious in pies and other desserts. However, Pecans are a diverse nut whose mellow flavor profile can be used for a variety of savory dishes so why not use them to make pesto?
Momma Ashley's Texas Pecan Pesto
Why it's on our list
When Momma Ashley's basil plant gets out of control which is more often than not, she gets to making pesto. She's made so many variations of pestos like traditional pine nut and basil but also mint, cilantro and even arugela pestos with pistachios and walnuts.
Her latest creation, Pecan Pesto, in our opinion is simply the best! It has a rich nutty flavor and the mozzarella cheese and tiny pat of butter give it a creaminess that is missing from the more common pestos. This recipe also calls for quite a bit of lemon juice which we love because the acid adds a brightness of flavor and keeps your pesto a vibrant green for days. If you are not a lemon lover, you can reduce the amount or simply leave it out.
Use this pesto for pasta sauce and serve it either hot or cold. It makes an incredible pasta salad that can be made the day before. Try adding fresh or sun dried tomatoes to your pasta salad for a pop of color and flavor. This pesto is also delicious served over salmon and baked in the oven. However, our absolute favorite way to eat pecan pesto is as a dip with crackers and crudite. Get creative and share with us your favorite way to use it. It can also be made ahead of time and frozen for up to 2 months.
2 cups fresh basil
1/2 cup large pecans
1/4 cup lemon juice (option to add less)
3 TLBS olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
2-3 garlic gloves
1/4 cup grated mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
1 tsp butter
Add all the ingredients to a Cuisinart and blend until desired smoothness. We like ours really smooth and creamy!
Serve it up!
How did you dish out your pecan pesto? Send us a note!