Homemade pesto is about the most nutritionally-dense food I can imagine. I make mine with different fresh greens from my vegetable garden, along with plenty of mixed nuts and seeds, garlic, parmesan and good-quality olive oil.
Try substituting the basil with a mixture of basil, baby spinach leaves and parsley, or even some raw broccoli in place of some of the herbs. You can also substitute the nuts with a mixture of nuts and seeds, such as walnuts, cashews, almonds, sunflower seeds and pepitas (pumpkin seeds).
75g (1 ½ cups firmly packed) fresh basil leaves (or a mix of basil, parsley, baby spinach leaves and/or coriander) (see tip)
50g (1/3 cup) pine nuts, walnuts, cashews or almonds (or use a mixture of nuts)
35g (1/3 cup) grated Parmesan cheese
½ garlic clove
3 tbsp olive oil, plus extra to cover
In the small bowl of a food processor (or you can use a Thermomix), blend the herbs, nuts, cheese and garlic until almost smooth, occasionally scraping down the sides with a spatula. Add the oil in a slow, thin stream and blend until smooth.
Transfer to a jar and cover the top with extra olive oil. Store in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Tip: if you don’t want your pesto to discolour, avoid using basil. A parsley or spinach pesto will stay green for longer, whereas basil pesto tends to turn brown when exposed to air.