Pesto is so delightful and can find its way into so many different recipes and dishes, the most common of which is pasta, however, there are so many other different types of use for pesto, some of which you might not have even realized at first!
For example, you can dollop a spoonful of pesto over a delicious risotto for extra flavor, and the same goes for roasted veggies, or even meats such as chicken and fish.
So, if you’re looking for a particularly tasty pesto recipe that is going to really blow away your guests at the dinner table, then I highly recommend this delicious roasted pepper, avocado and hazelnut pesto!
Ingredients Needed For This Recipe
This recipe doesn’t call for any particularly hard to find ingredients, so you should have no issue whatsoever finding all of the ingredients at your local grocery store.
In addition to that, this recipe is super simple to make and is also completely vegan, so it really is suitable for everyone.
This recipe’s ingredient list is designed to make between 6 – 8 portions of the pesto, so if you want more or less pesto making, then simply adjust the recipe’s quantities accordingly!
- 4 Roasted red peppers – deseeded. (More on these in a moment).
- 40 grams of parmesan cheese – roughly chopped.
- 80 grams of toasted hazelnuts
- ½ avocado – sliced
- 25g basil leaves – fresh is much better, but you can always substitute for dried basil if you can’t access any fresh leaves!
- 1 teaspoon of sea salt
- Juice from ¼ of a lemon
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil – for a recipe like this, we really recommend using extra virgin olive oil, it contains much more flavor and also has added health benefits too!
The best thing about this recipe is just how simple it is for you to make!
Honestly, something as fancy as this pesto really doesn’t seem like it should be this easy to cook, so if you’re a student who’s just moved out and looking to impress someone with their cooking or a parent who wants a change from simple oven food, then this is a great place to start!
In order to make this pesto, all you have to do is add all of the individual ingredients into a food processor and then blend them together until they form a rough-looking paste.
Make sure that you stop the processor regularly in order to scrape the sides, as this will prevent you from wasting any ingredients as well as ensuring that the consistency of the pesto is kept even too.
And that is all there is to it! From here, you can add your pesto to any number of dishes, so it’s time to get creative!
A Note On Toasting And Roasting
As you may have noticed, this recipe calls for roasted red peppers and toasted hazelnuts.
Now if you’re a busy student or parent then the chances are that you’ll want to save as much time as possible whilst preparing your ingredients.
In which case, you should opt to use a jar of roasted peppers instead.
However, in the interest of taste, you should opt to roast your red pepper yourself, which will dramatically increase the flavor and improve the taste of your pesto!
Roasting Red Peppers
Whilst it might seem daunting at first, roasting your red peppers on your own is actually incredibly simple.
Firstly you’ll want to heat up your grill until it’s hot, and then you want to place your red peppers on a tin foil lined baking tray and then place it under the grill.
The secret is that you want your peppers to blacken, but not to char at all, as this will ruin the taste.
The ideal cooking time is about 4-5 minutes on each side of the pepper, and in total should only take about 10-12 minutes, so it doesn’t add too much in the way of prep time.
Once roasted, simply place them to the side until the recipe calls for them!
Toasting hazelnuts is just as easy as roasting your red peppers and is actually much harder to get wrong, so even if you’ve never had to toast nuts before, you shouldn’t have any problems getting this one right!
The first step is to preheat your oven to 350°F, this will take a while to reach, so just relax in the meantime.
Next, you’ll want to align your hazelnuts on a rimmed baking tray, you need to make sure that these nuts stay on a singular layer, which will ensure that all of the hazelnuts are toasted evenly!
You should also try to leave a little bit of space between the hazelnuts too, as this again will make sure that they are cooked properly.
The next step is to put them in the oven for 15 minutes and make sure that you move them around every 5 minutes or so.
You can tell when the hazelnuts are properly toasted thanks to their fragrant smell and their cracked and glistening skin.
Their skin is quite dark, to begin with, so if you’re unsure whether or not you’re charring them, it’s always better for them to be slightly under-roasted as opposed to being burnt.
Once they’ve toasted, all you have to do is transfer your hazelnuts from the baking tray to a kitchen towel and then allow them to cool down before you use them in the recipe!
Leaving them in the baking tray may lead them to overheat, which is why it’s always a good idea to transfer them across.
So that’s how you make this wonderful vegan roasted pepper, avocado, and hazelnut pesto. Whatever you decide to pair it with, we’re sure it will be delicious!