Roasted Red Pepper Pesto Crostini
I’m obsessed with red bell peppers! It’s a running joke in my house that no matter what, I always have red bell peppers on hand. Which is exactly what inspired this Roasted Red Pepper Pesto. This recipe has the perfect balance of creamy and earthy flavors. The ricotta adds a luxuriously rich taste that goes so well with the smokey roasted flavor of the peppers. Add this pesto on anything from pasta to meat, crackers, or veggies and it will taste amazing! I’m an Italian girl, which means I can’t live without bread, so I’ve taken freshly grilled bread and topped it with the Roasted Red Pepper Pesto then sprinkled on some goat cheese for an added burst of flavor to create a perfect crostini.
Tips for Roasted Red Pepper Pesto
*You know I am a “from scratch” girl, but it is totally fine to use store-bought jarred roasted red peppers. Feel free to roast your own if you want as well! It’s one of those things that I actually don’t think makes a huge difference if you buy it or make it!
*Use freshly grated cheese! If you don’t have pecorino then you can use parmesan instead, but either way, they need to be grated fresh!
*Mix well! I love making pestos because a small amount packs a huge punch of flavor AND they are really versatile. However, you have to mix pesto really well to make sure it’s nice and smooth. I use my food processor and I also use my Vitamix. Make sure to mix it until it is smooth and check for seasonings. Some cheeses are saltier than others so you may need more or less salt depending on the cheese.
¾ cup whole milk ricotta cheese
1 cup jarred roasted red peppers
½ cup pecorino; freshly grated
1 cup toasted pine nuts
2 teaspoons fresh oregano
½ cup fresh basil leaves
Salt and pepper to taste
A squeeze of fresh lemon juice
½ cup olive oil
Place the pine nuts in a shallow skillet over medium heat; tossing/stirring frequently. Toast until the nuts are fragrant and slightly brown; careful, this won’t take too long!
Remove from skillet and allow the pine nuts to cool.
Once cool, place the pine nuts and remaining ingredients, excluding the olive oil, into a food processor or Vitamix – Certified Reconditioned Vitamix A2500.
Process everything together and gradually begin adding the olive oil in through the opening in the lid. *Note – Add about ½ cup olive oil or as much as you like until you reach the consistency you prefer.
Taste for flavor and add more herbs, salt, and pepper as needed to your taste.