When I worked in Boston, my coworkers and I frequented a super delicious Thai restaurant called Thai Basil. My favorite thing to get was the Thai Basil Salad, which was a huge fresh salad topped with tons of shrimp and chicken and these curious pointy-looking basil leaves that had a little more bite to them than your typical basil.
I still dream about that salad once in a while.
When I was planting my garden, of course basil was one thing that was definitely going in. But while shopping for regular, Italian sweet basil, I stumbled upon seeds for Thai basil! Thai basil has that basil-y taste, but is a little more anise-y/licorice-y. It’s different and just… really good.
Turns out it grows really well, too! While my regular basil was looking scraggly and yellowed, my Thai basil was OUT. OF. CONTROL.
So I had to make something with it! Too much basil = pesto, naturally. But Thai basil? How about pesto with Thai flavors like peanuts and lime? Heck, yes!
Thai Basil Pesto
(adapted from Lucy’s Corner)
- 2 cups packed Thai basil leaves
- 1/2 cup dry roasted peanuts
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1/2 inch fresh ginger, roughly chopped
- 2 tsp fish sauce
- 2 tbsp lime juice
- 1-2 jalapenos, halved
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- Salt, to taste
Place basil, peanuts, garlic, ginger, fish sauce, lime juice and jalapenos in a food processor. Pulse a few times to roughly chop. Turn the food processor on and, while it’s running, drizzle in olive oil. Process until smooth.
Store in the fridge in an airtight container.
I tossed some soba noodles, shrimp and red pepper strips with the pesto, then topped it all with crushed peanuts. It was super yummy. I’m thinking of using some of the leftover pesto in fresh spring rolls!