This is one of my mad "foodie" science experiments! I had a huge amount of Thai basil from my last trip to the farmer's market and wanted to use it before it went bad. So I thought, why not make a paste based on Italian style pesto? I substituted common southeast Asian herbs, peanuts for the pine-nuts, cut down the amount of oil since I wouldn't be including a cheese, and voila! And I would like to acknowledge that I based some of my measurements on Dianne's Arugula Pesto at A Stove With a House Around It.
- 1/3 cup peanuts
- 1 cup Thai basil
- 1/3 cup cilantro
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 TB lime juice
- 1 small red chili (I left the seeds in, if you aren't a spice fiend you might want to scrape the seeds out)
- 1/3 cup vegetable oil (although, next time I'm going to try peanut oil, I was out when I made this)
I am sans food processor right now, so I just tossed all peanuts, herbs, garlic, and pepper in my spice grinder, tossed the resulting paste in a mixing bowl and added the lime juice and the vegetable oil and used a hand mixer to combine everything. I used half of it for Rice Noodle Stir Fry with Thai Basil Pesto , and froze the other half in a ziploc bag in the freezer.
Note: Because of the lack of a substitute for the cheese in Italian style pesto, this paste doesn't have much in the way of a salty flavor. Next time I make this I may add a TB of fish sauce--but then again may not, since almost everything I will probably cook with this with with have Nuoc Cham on the side.