CLASSIC BASIL PESTO

 

I fell in love with pesto while exploring the area around the Genoa, Italy where this classic pesto originates.

 

It’s such a versatile sauce in that it quickly elevates any pasta dish, but it's also great for spreading onto fish or chicken, making marinades and salad dressing, and as a base for dips.

I usually make a double batch of the below and keep on hand for quick and easy dinners during the week.

PREP TIME:  10 min

MAKES:  about 1 cup

INGREDIENTS
  • 2 cups, packed (80 g) fresh basil leaves

  • 6 cloves garlic

  • ¼ cup (35 g) pine nuts

  • 1/3 cup (35 g) parmesan cheese

  • ½ tsp salt

  • ½ cup (120 ml) olive oil

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PREPARATION

 

Add first 5 ingredients to a food processor (or blender) and blitz into a fine dice.

 

With the motor running, slowly drizzle in the olive oil and blend for about 1 minute.

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SERVE

VEGGIE PASTA SERVING INSPIRATION

Cook pasta according to direction on package.

 

While pasta cooks, saute mushrooms in a bit of olive oil for 5 minutes, then add fresh broccoli florets and cook another 5 minutes.

While the broccoli and mushrooms cook, defrost frozen 'petite pois' (small peas) on low, then stir into the mushrooms and broccoli.

Drain pasta, add to a large bowl and stir in pesto sauce to taste.  Spoon into individual serving bowls and top with sauted vegetables.  

 

Garnish with parmesan as desired.

...or

Over any type of pasta

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With Greek yogurt for a crudite dip

Thin out with olive oil to dress this version of Panzanella

Smear over cod filets before cooking

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Over Taste of Tuscany Beans & Spelt

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Recipe & Photo Credit:  Cathy Menees

COOK'S NOTES

 

INGREDIENTS:  Fresh is key.  That's all I have to say!

 

STORING:  Our refigerator is set to 3 Celsius, which is about 37 Fahrenheit.  At that temperature, and stored in an air-tight container, this pesto lasts easily 2 weeks.  *Refrigerators and storage containers vary, so just observe your own to get a feel for how long it will last.  You will know by the smell (or growing mold) when something is not right! 

 

KITCHEN BUDDIES:  food processor is key to get a fine blend with these ingredients.

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