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Sweet and Sour Georgia Pecan Pesto Salad

Sweet and Sour Georgia Pecan Pesto SaladRecipe courtesy of Georgia Pecan Commission.

Recipe Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups pecan halves - divided use
1 cup quinoa or couscous
2 cups water
1 1/2 cups fresh basil leaves
3 large cloves garlic
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon honey
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 (10-ounce) bag salad greens of your choice
1 cup raisins
Salt and pepper to taste

Cooking Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 250°F (120°C).
  2. Place pecans on a baking sheet and toast for 10 to 15 minutes or until they deepen in color. Set aside.
  3. Rinse the quinoa in a strainer under running water and let drain. Place in heavy saucepan or pot and let toast slightly over low heat, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add 2 cups water to the pan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until water is absorbed and quinoa is done, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
  4. In food processor or blender, place 1/2 cup of the pecans, basil and garlic Pulse until well combined. Add lemon juice, honey and balsamic vinegar and pulse until combined. With processor running, slowly add in olive oil until pesto thickens. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
  5. In a large salad bowl, toss together salad greens, quinoa and raisins. Toss with 1/2 cup of the pesto, adding more as needed. Top the salad with the remaining whole toasted pecans and serve.

Makes 6 servings.

Recipe and photograph courtesy of Georgia Pecan Commission.