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  • Writer's pictureBetsi Iris

Sneak in this Tasty Superfood Pesto+ Boost your Family's Immunity!

Updated: Jun 22, 2023

While teaching kids how to wash hands thoroughly has become an imperative, we also need to help them “tidy up” on the inside! Steering clear of an unseen virus is easier with a healthy immune system. There are many ways to boost immunity but one of the simplest is to clean up and enrich our diet. What we eat can be powerful, and in the resounding words of Hippocrates, ”let food be thy medicine...”

But how do we get our kids to eat what their bodies need for improved health? Some parents hide broccoli in brownies or add loads of sweetener to green smoothies or baked goods to "help the medicine go down."

Our kids are clever and so are resistant spouses and grandparents who cringe at the sight of dark greens. We do need to be smart! But there are tasty and healthier ways.

Research tells us that dark green leafy vegetables are precisely what’s needed to cleanse our intestines of impurities and provide antioxidants, phytochemicals and vitamin C, K and folate all known to lower risk of many diseases by increasing immune functioning. That’s where “pesto power” comes in...this version is filled with organic kale. And that’s just half of its immune power! It also has several other immune boosting ingredients like fresh garlic, a natural microbial (“nature’s antibiotic”), nutritional yeast, lemon and extra virgin olive oil.

If you haven’t heard of it already, Nutritional Yeast (not the yeast for rising bread) is worth knowing lots about. Nutritional Yeast is a nutrient dense substance which grows on molasses and is heated and dried into flakes. It has a “cheesy” taste and is often added to non-dairy sauces, soups and dressings. Nutritional Yeast contains many healthy properties with B12, B6, Zinc, folate and a moderate amount of protein and fiber too! Trader Joe’s has their own affordable version which is easy to find.

The next superstar in this immune boosting pesto is the lemon, which is an anti-inflammatory because of its antioxidants and also consists of antiviral and antibacterial properties. Walnuts make this recipe creamy and is an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids known to reduce “bad cholesterol” and is also an antioxidant filled with phytonutrients. And the last ingredient is the oldest known anti-inflammatory and antioxidant, olive oil. The first press of the olives or “extra virgin” olive oil is recommended and is highest in nutrition and also known to be the tastiest!

This pesto is a parent’s dream...served on a toasted baguette, rolled into wraps or tossed with pasta: every bite is a tasty raw foods immune boost!

Mama’s Superfood Pesto ~Wash thoroughly 2/3 large heads of raw organic kale and 6 cups of fresh basil, set these aside to dry on a rack or on linen towels. In a food processor, blend one whole medium bulb of garlic (peel parts/remove tips), 4 cups of raw organic walnuts and 2 cups of extra virgin olive oil until it is emulsified into a creamy consistency. Add to the mixture 2 cups of Nutritional Yeast Flakes, 4T of sea salt, 1T of black pepper, and the juice of 4 lemons and puree together with another cup of extra virgin olive oil. ~Now remove half of the mixture from the food processor, put it in a glass bowl and set aside. ~With the remaining mixture still in the processor, stuff half the washed kale and basil leaves all the way to the top of the processor. Secure the top and blend on a low setting - you may need to open and mix the lumpy mixture until all the greens are incorporated. Judge for yourself if you would like your pesto to be spreadable or a thick sauce by adding olive oil as needed. Salt and pepper to taste. This batch is done!

~Remove and store in a mason jar, refrigerate. It should be fine for multiple uses at least 4/5 days if the jar top is tightly closed in between use. ~The mixture in the glass bowl can now go back into the processor with the remaining washed kale and basil for a second jar of pesto! Store this with a tightly sealed top for a week or two if unopened.

Be creative with your tasty “medicine.” Superfood pesto can be layered in filo-dough or puff pastry and baked: a unique homebound + creative project which can bring all ages together!

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