Pesto

Pesto is the single best use of our huge basil plants!  It is easy, delicious, and easily adapted.

We are giving our basic recipe, suggesting changes and mentioning a few uses for Pesto.

Recipe

  • 2-3 big handfuls of clean basil leaves
  • ⅓ C. Toasted pine nuts
  • ½ C. Parmesan cheese
  • 1 clove of garlic, cut in half
  • Olive oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Fresh lemon juice
  1. Place basil leaves, pine nuts, cheese and garlic in a food processor bowl. Roughly chop with off and on button.
  2. Slowly add olive oil through the feeder tube, with the processor turned on, until the density you want is achieved. You will probably use at least ½ C of olive oil)
  3. Use a rubber spatula to scrape the bowl sides and then taste for salt.  The amount of salt depends on your taste and the salty taste of the Parmesan.  Generally, ½ t. Is sufficient. At the same time, add ½ t. pepper.
  4. Process quickly, scrape and taste.  Brighten the flavor with fresh lemon juice- we like the juice of ½ lemon.
  5. Process quickly and either use or refrigerate in a clean container until you are ready to use and then bring to room temperature by sitting on the counter.  Do not heat.  
  6. If freezing, do not add cheese until defrosted. (awe just freeze basil and make the pesto later with frozen leaves.

Changes

  • Use walnuts instead of pine nuts. 
  • Add a small handful of mint.
  • Add a small bit of cream to the pesto before serving.
  • Serve with additional parmesan cheese.
  • Serve with diced tomatoes

Uses

  • Mixed with pasta – we think angle hair is best.
  • Marinade for chicken.
  • Topping for flank steak.
  • On pizza.
  • As a dipping sauce.
  • On a sandwich.
  • Presented to a friend as a gift.
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