Pesto is great all year round and it is so versatile too not only for pasta but it can also be used in salads or as a dressing. I always grow a couple of plants in the summer and it’s impossible to use it all as a herb so I make lots of jars of pesto with it. Some I gift to friends and family and the rest I store for the winter months
As the traditional pesto Genovese recipe is done in a pestle and mortar just like my grandmother showed me. You add the garlic and rock salt and blend. Then add the basil in stages until it becomes a paste.
Unfortunately not many of us have a lot of time in our busy lives so it’s much easier and quicker to make it in a food processor.
- 50g fresh basal
- 30g pine nuts
- 2 cloves garlic
- 250ml extra virgin olive oil
- 80g grated parmesan cheese
- 20g grated pecorino (optional)
- pinch rock salt
- Throw in the garlic, salt, basil, pine nuts and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil into the food processer and blend until it becomes a thick paste.
- Add the parmesan cheese and pulse.
- Pour in the rest of the olive oil and your done!!
Pine nuts can be quite expensive so you can substitute them for other nuts such as wall nuts or almonds so don’t be afraid to experiment. As basil grows so well here in Italy I make quite a large quantity of it and store it in the fridge, if you do the same or you want to make a large quantity of pesto I would recommend not putting the cheese in when you make it as the it will mature over time and the flavour of the pesto will become too strong so add the parmesan in when you are cooking.
If you are like me and you make a large jar of pesto for the fridge always keep it topped up with extra virgin olive oil to keep the pesto fresh.