Sunday, May 11, 2008

Lower Fat Arugula Walnut Pesto

Every week I make a batch of pesto. Eating a lower fat, vegan diet sometimes it's hard to feel satisfied and a T of pesto stirred into soup just before eating or as a spread on a sandwich can make the difference between an OK meal and something that is very satisfying. I like to vary the greens. Sometimes I use baby spinach, sometimes kale, sometimes basil. This week it was baby arugula. I usually just throw things together, but since I've been slacking on writing down recipes, I decided to measure and post the recipe. The lime adds a great flavor that is not really limey if that makes sense.
Arugula Walnut Pesto

3 cloves garlic
1/2 t sea salt
1/2 c walnuts
(you can toast them if you wish. I didn't because I'm trying to do as much raw as possible)
7 oz baby arugula
1 T golden flax meal
4 T water
3 T nutritional yeast
2 T light miso
2 t dried basil
1/8 t cayenne
several grates fresh nutmeg

Place garlic and salt in a food processor and process until the garlic is almost pastelike. Add the walnuts and process some more. Add the rest of the ingredients and process until it becomes the consistency you like. If you don't care about fat or calories, you can use extra virgin olive oil in place of the water.

Yield 1 cup

1 Tablespoon Pesto contains:
35 calories
3 g fat

in comparison to 60 calories and 6 grams of fat in traditional pesto.

Lightlife Smart Dogs are something both my kids like.. I made these sandwiches for my 16 year old... Teen boys sure eat a lot. Each sandwich contained 2 Smart Dogs cut in half, vegenaise, dijon, spinach, tomatoes, ketchup and relish. He was very satisfied and all in all, even though it's a lot of food the calories were much less than traditional hot dogs. 1 Smart Dog contains 45 calories, 0 g fat, 9 g protein and 1 gram of fiber.. much better than the 120 calories per the animal product.
I just love seagulls. I think they're beautiful. It is a beautiful day today.

Happy Mother's Day to all of you!


  1. I LOVE pesto sauces, especially the basil and sundried-tomato varieties; yet I have never tried arugula pesto before... your recipe sounds fabulous!

    Seagulls are definitely beautiful creatures. When my parents and I travel to Mackinac Island, there's always at least ONE seagull that follows us around all day on the beach, haha :0)

  2. Your pesto looks and sounds delish. I often make basil pesto, but I have yet to try it with other herbs. Thanks for the inspiration!

  3. Mmm, can't wait for the arugula in my garden to grow! Your pesto sounds so yummy!

  4. Yum! I just recently tried arugula in pesto and loved it. I can't eat walnuts but like the addition of the flax or maybe I'll throw some hemp seeds in. Looks good!

    Your son's sandwich looks DEELISH too! I don't know though, I know some teenage girls who could plow through that sandwich in seconds and turn around and want more and STILL run it all off at the next basketball tournament... teenagers and sports, I swear it's a plot to empty my pantry!!

  5. Your pesto recipe looks really delicious Melody. I love arugula pesto and also love that you've replaced the oil in the recipe with the flax meal and water. I can't wait to give it a try.

  6. I love anything having to do with pesto! I have been making Dreena's Creamy Basil Dressing-using the raw option, and it is so delicious! You must try it.

  7. This pesto looks great. I also add a splash of vinegar or rice wine or lime juice (something acidy) to bring out the flavor. Your arugula variety sounds superb, a must-try....

  8. Delish pesto! Does it turn brown quickly?

    Thanks for your comment on my post. Actually, I was thinking of you as the counterpart to "Hungry Girl" because you use such delicious, natural foods in your weight loss plan. I may write a follow up post and refer to your blog.

  9. yr pesto sounds good!
    when i was a little kid, a seagull swooped down and stole my whole slice of pizza. me and seagulls were no longer friends at that moment.

  10. I love pestos, but have never tried arugula- but I will- this looks & sounds divine.

  11. I'll definitely have to try this...we have an awesome arugala vendor at my farmer's market and I'm looking for creative ways to use it besides salads.

  12. Anonymous7:19 PM

    Your arugula walnut pesto looks so yummy.

    Traci Lynn

  13. I love color & texture of this pesto -- gorgeous!

  14. Happy Mother Day to you, Melody! Your pesto recipe looks delicious.

  15. I have to start making more pesto, yours looks just incredible!

  16. That pesto is gorgeous. I can't wait to try it!