General Question

spendy's avatar

Yummiest way to use/prepare pine nuts?

Asked by spendy (1449points) May 28th, 2008

Saw some at the grocery store and grabbed them, having no idea what to actually do with them. I’m an adventurous cook. :) Any good ideas or recipes?

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

29 Answers

kevbo's avatar

I like them in salads. You can toast them or add them in raw.

Also, aren’t they a base ingredient for pesto?

marinelife's avatar

I love pine nuts and use them all the time. This time of year I start to think about pesto. You need lots of fresh basil leaves, garlic, olive oil, and parmesan cheese. Put ingredients in a food processor or blender, and then stream in the olive oil. Fabulous on pasta (especially fresh) or a dollop in scrambled eggs or as an omelet filling, or spread on crostini. I am making myself hungry. I haven’t had dinner.

I also toss them into other pasta dishes I am making (toast them gently—they burn easily).

They also make great desserts in cookies, for example.

PupnTaco's avatar

Toasted and salted, in a pasta salad with fusilli, cubed mozarella, fresh tomato, fresh basil, and a simple vinaigrette.

ezraglenn's avatar

pine nuts, as stated above, are great toasted in salads and in pesto. I wonder what might happen if you put pine nuts on a pizza?

spendy's avatar

Hmmm…this all sounds very good. I’m about to whip up some dinner.

@Marina, can I use jar basil instead? Don’t have fresh on-hand.

@PupnTaco, I’m writing that one down too. (Note to self: pick up fusilli + mozarella)

marinelife's avatar

@spendywatson Yes, but it will not be as good so keep that in mind and try it with the fresh later.

breedmitch's avatar

@spendy: Jar basil as in dried? Absolutely not! I’ve never seen basil in a jar that was fresh, but if you find some then use it. I guess what I’m saying is you absolutely can not make pesto with dried basil.

marinelife's avatar

@breedmitch I don’t know what kind spendy has, but jar basil is usually in oil already. It certainly won’t be the same, but it might work. It would end up like jarred pesto I think.

gailcalled's avatar

Anyone, and I mean anyone, can grow basil in a pot – on fire escape, on window sill, on balcony, on top of car if parked outside. I, personally, plant it next to tomato plants in a BIG, HUGE, DEEP pot on deck. Now all I need is a Mozarella tree.

Slightly off the subject; to hold fresh basil over, put in food processor with parmesan cheese; the mixture will freeze.

Pesto works also on toasted, sliced-on-bias whole wheat French baguettes.

sarahsugs's avatar

A slightly off-topic basil tip for those who do not have their own basil plants (the snails always eat mine) – if you have a leftover bunch or a bunch you have yet to use, put the stems into a small jar of water. Pull a plastic bag over the leaves and tuck the open end down underneath the jar, or put a rubber band around the the jar oustide the plastic bag. Place it on a windowsill or counter. It creates a mini-greenhouse for the basil and I find it lasts MUCH longer that way than in a bag in the fridge. Also works for parsley.

shilolo's avatar

I would suggest sprinkling some pine nuts onto a plate of hummus that has been drizzled with quality olive oil and a splash of paprika. Then, get some warm pita bread and wipe the plate clean… Hmmmm.

marinelife's avatar

@shilolo Sounds tasty. I will try that.

shilolo's avatar

Don’t do it Marina…. You’ll be hooked ;-)

spendy's avatar

Yep – my basil is in a jar w. oil. I’ll definitely try it with fresh. I’m snagging all the recipes you guys have posted in this thread!

@shilolo – that sounds pretty wicked (yummy!)

shilolo's avatar

@Spendy. Also, quite easy to do. The best thing is that you can whip up a bunch of hummus and prepare a larger amount for guests, barbecues, etc. Just spread the hummus out onto a bigger plate and bring the oil/paprika/pine nuts with you (if you are bringing it over to someone’s house). Make the final arrangement there and bring some pita cut up into wedges. It looks and tastes great.

spendy's avatar

How do you make hummus? I was prepared to fetch a few cans of it (shame on me)

marinelife's avatar

Garbanzo beans (also called chickpeas; canned is fine), lemon juice and sesame seed paste (called tahini). Blend. Some people add mined fresh parsley or even mint as garnish.

ezraglenn's avatar

Olive Oil
Tahini (some people consider this optional)
Lemon Juice
Spices if you’re into that.

Blend this in a food processor, add more of things as you need them to get the right consistency. Go heavy on the chickpeas at first. Then add liquids to get the right consistency.

ezraglenn's avatar

If you are using canned chickpeas (which you probably will), make sure you DRAIN them. otherwise it’s just a disaster.

spendy's avatar

:) excellent

marinelife's avatar

@ezraglen Good thing you rode to the rescue, because I forgot to mention the garlic, which is vital!

christybird's avatar

Pine nuts (one of my FAVORITE ingredients, they are so freaking delicious) are also good in sweet things…you can make pine nut cookies, for example.

shilolo's avatar

@Spendy. Ezra’s recipe is good, but I would add two comments. First, when you drain the chickpeas, make sure to reserve some of the liquid. You will want that if you need to “dilute” the hummus. The chickpea juice is far better than water for that purpose. Second, for spices, I always use a little bit of cumin. Here is an Israeli hummus recipe with cumin. Enjoy.

Jill_E's avatar

After you make the pesto..

It is GREAT on sandwiches especially turkey or chix sandwiches.

marinelife's avatar

@Jill_E I have never tried that. It sounds fantastic! I will try it now. Thanks.

spendy's avatar

IMPORTANT UPDATE: I most certainly DO have fresh basil. I found some growing in my garden – had no clue it was there. The seeds never sprouted last season. LUCKY ME ;)

PupnTaco's avatar

Volunteer basil = awesome

gooch's avatar

pesto of course and also add some to brown rice.

kimberly_moore's avatar

It’s great for special events and cookies! I know this site that provides some recipes with this kind of nuts


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