This is a little remedy for the winter blues a vividly colored and bold pesto. Here I’ve paired it with black beans and sautéed long hot green peppers (which really aren’t very hot) for a simple side.

The pesto is made with cilantro and pepitas (pumpkin seeds) rather than the traditional basil and pine nuts. My parents recently shared this tip with me using pepitas in place of nuts removes the allergy issue from the recipe.

This recipe makes double the amount of pesto that you’ll need. I served this side with pork chops and some additional pesto on the side. If you don’t use all of the pesto it will keep for a week in the refrigerator or frozen for up to three months.

It was a nice sauce for the pork chops and would work well with fish, chicken or eggs, too.

Tip:  If you have time, try cooking dried beans. It’s super easy and they taste better than canned beans.

Black Beans and Long Hot Green Peppers with Cilantro Pesto


Black Beans and Long Hot Green Peppers with Cilantro Pesto
Recipe type: Side
Serves: 4
  • 4 long hot green peppers, seeds removed and cut into short strips
  • ⅔ cup plus 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil plus
  • 1 cup (4.5 ounces) pepitas (pumpkin seeds), divided
  • 1 cup lightly packed cilantro leaves and stems
  • ⅓ cup grated Pecorino-Romano cheese
  • 3 garlic cloves, skins removed
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, seeds removed and deveined
  • 2 15.5 ounce cans of black beans, rinsed and drained
  1. In a frying pan over medium heat, heat 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil. Sauté long hot green peppers until soft and slightly browned, about 7 to 9 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool.
  2. Preheat toaster or regular oven to 350°F. Place pepitas on a rimmed cookie sheet and roast until fragrant and start to darken, about 5 to 7 minutes. Let cool and remove set aside ⅓ cup for pesto.
  3. In a food processor, blender or Vitamix, add ⅓ cup of pepitas, cilantro, cheese, garlic cloves, lemon juice, jalapeño pepper and sea salt. Blend until combined. With motor running, add extra virgin olive oil in a steady stream until pesto comes together. Taste and add salt as needed.
  4. In a medium bowl, combine black beans, long hot green peppers, remaining pepitas and ½ cup pesto. Toss go coat and add more pesto if needed. Let sit for an hour at room temperature or for a few hours in the refrigerator for flavors to develop. Serve at room temperature.
Recipe makes about 1 cup of pesto so you will likely have leftovers. It will keep for a week in the refrigerator or frozen for up to three months.


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2018-01-11T20:41:29+00:00 January 11th, 2018|Categories: Sides|Tags: , , , , , , , |0 Comments

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