I like it on Pasta, Sandwiches, as a dip for chips and crusty bread.
My funny husband thinks it tastes like Sage Brush . . . but still eats it.
It’s delicious on my new favorite Pizza crust – Remember the Jim Lahey recipe I posted.
I’m telling you . . . it’s fabulous!
It also makes a delicious Chewy Flatbread and Pesto completes it.
I love to make a sandwich with Pesto, tomatoes, melted Mozzarella and a sprinkle of Parmesan.
Plop it under the broiler for a few minutes and it’s spectacular.
You can’t enjoy Pesto . . . if the other members of your household don’t eat it as well.
Look at that bowl of green Pesto – I put extra Olive Oil in for my hubbie.
He simply likes to dip into the pesto infused oil, rather than scoop up the green stuff.
Legend has it that pesto gets its name from the way it is traditionally prepared – with a mortar and pestle (mortaio e pestello). In Liguria, a ceramic mortar and wooden pestle are used with a gentle turn of the wrist, so as to squeeze the delicate flavor from the basil leaves rather than crush them.
While true Ligurians use a mortar and pestle to coax the flavors of basil, pine nuts and garlic together, those of us who do not (me) have this equipment can still enjoy a delicious pesto prepared in a food processor.
Don’t buy Pesto from the grocery store – it’s yuck.
It’s extremely fast & easy to make. The recipes below are both favorites.
I like one better . . . My sweet half likes the other better.
You decide for yourself.
Either way, he still thinks it tastes like Sagebrush . . . but good Sagebrush!
It’s basically Garlic, Pine nuts, basil leaves, Olive oil, Parmesan cheese and . . .
Salt & Pepper.
Somehow I forgot to add it to the picture above.
Simply Place the walnuts, pignolis, and garlic in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade.
Process for 30 seconds.
Add the basil leaves, salt & pepper.
With the processor running, slowly pour the olive oil into the bowl through the feed tube and process until the pesto is thoroughly pureed.
Add the grated Parmesan and puree for a minute.
Sage brush . . . never tasted so good!
Since we can’t possibly use it all at once, I separate it into small containers.
Pine nuts are expensive . . . so you certainly don’t want to waste it.
One goes in the fridge and the others in the freezer.
Serve, or store the pesto in the refrigerator or freezer with a thin film of olive oil on top.
When you serve it, you can stir additional olive oil in the mixture if you like.
Perfect Pesto #1
- 1/4 cup walnuts
- 1/4 cup pignolis (pine nuts)
- 3 tablespoons chopped garlic (9 cloves)
- 5 cups fresh basil leaves (4 cups would be plenty)
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 1/2 cups good olive oil
- 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan
Place the walnuts, pignolis, and garlic in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Process for 30 seconds. Add the basil leaves, salt, and pepper. With the processor running, slowly pour the olive oil into the bowl through the feed tube and process until the pesto is thoroughly pureed. Add the Parmesan and puree for a minute. Serve, or store the pesto in the refrigerator or freezer with a thin film of olive oil on top.
Perfect Pesto #2
- 1/3 cup pine nuts, toasted (Tip: buy the pine nuts in bulk. That way, you only buy what you need, as pre-packaged pine nuts can be expensive)
- 16-18 fresh basil leaves
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 6-8 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- ½ cup freshly grated parmigiano reggiano cheese
- a splash of lime juice (optional)
- sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste.
To toast the pine nuts, heat about 2 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil in a skillet and add your pine nuts, stirring often until golden (keep an eye on them because they can get burned very quickly). Tip: make sure your pine nuts cool completely before adding them to the food processor, or they can bruise your basil leaves.
In the food processor, add the basil leaves, pine nuts, minced garlic, about 4 tbsp of the olive oil, and salt and pepper. Blend until blended. Add the parmesan cheese and a splash of lime juice and blend again until creamy and smooth. Add more salt and pepper if desired.
Add to cooked pasta (angel hair, linguine), and garnish with fresh basil leaves and freshly grated parmesan.