Home made Pesto

Basil

Basil

Temperatures are nice and warm, garden centers are as busy as an anthill, for me it is time to stock up on the herbs !

I like to make as much of the food we eat myself, and pesto is one of the easiest and most versatile sauces that can be made . . . .  needless to say, it is also extremely delicious.

Here is my recipe, which comes from the “Consorzio del Pesto Genovese” which is the consortium of Genoese pesto. Unfortunately mine can not be called “Pesto alla Genovese” because I will not find the same variety of basil that they use in Liguria ( the region in Italy where pesto is made) which is called “Ocimum Basilicum”

Pesto

Pesto

Ingredients for 4 people:

– 50 grams of fresh basil – 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil – 6 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese – 4 tablespoons of Pecorino cheese – 2 cloves of garlic (the rule requires 1 clove every 30 leaves of basil) – 1 tablespoon of pine nuts – a pinch of salt.

Old fashion way:

  • Wash the basil leaves and let them dry on a tea towel.
  • In a marble mortar with a wooden pestle crush the garlic with a pinch of salt.
  • When the garlic has turned into a creme add the basil leaves, a few at a time, and gently crush them with a round movement so that you can extract all the essential oils.
  • When the mixture becomes bright green add a handfull of pine nuts and work them into the basil to make a paste.
  • Now you can add the two cheeses and when everything is all combined you add the olive oil, piano piano = little by little untill you reach the desired consistency.

Modern way:

  • Wash the basil leaves and gently dry them with a tea towel, insert all ingredients with 1/2 of the oil in a food processor and pulse untill the pesto comes together, or in a tall container and blend with an immersion blender, then add the remaining olive oil untill you reach the desired consistency.

Tips:

– You can make large quantities of pesto and freezer it, I like to put it in muffin tins, lined with paper liners, this way I have the right quantity whenever I need it.

– To avoid it from oxidizing and turning dark green add a little bit of sparkling mineral water

 

 

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