Many years ago, my mom introduced me to the wonders of basil pesto. She would make gnocchi covered in it along side of sauteed chicken livers. Oh yes I do eat liver. I love chicken liver. I know, I know, one of but of few of us alive on this planet who loves liver. My kids hate it. Mr. Fae will only eat it in pate. Sorta. Anyway, I grew up loving liver and loving pesto. Mom always bought pre-made pesto until I started really cooking up a storm. She and I decided that since I grew my own basil we should make pesto. We tried so many different recipes, taste testing this one or that one. Some used walnuts or pecans. Some used pine nuts. Some used a combination of basil and parsley; some just used basil. We settled on a combination of a few of them. Mom preferred the walnuts while I preferred the pine nuts.
The thing about making pesto is that you must ask yourself a very important question. How badly do I want to reek of garlic? If the answer is, “Garlic, schmarlic…throw the whole head in”, well, then, you’re one tough cookie.
I love garlic, so with this recipe, I used about 5 cloves. You can use more or less depending on the size of the cloves or how much mouth wash you have in the bathroom.
Peeling the cloves is the most difficult part of this recipe. After that, it gets far more simpler.
Here’s the deal. Process until it becomes blended. Some folks like their pesto to be a bit chunkier than some while others prefer a nice puree. I do a little bit of both.It looks a bit chunky but when I add the oil …SLOWLY…it will become more liquid like.
You might think that it has become too pureed but remember you still have the cheese to add. And once you do that, it becomes somewhat chunky again.
Also add some sea salt and freshly ground pepper. Don’t add too much salt because the cheese will be salty as well.
Blend just for a few seconds, you don’t want to turn it into soup!
2 cups fresh basil
1 cup olive oil (extra virgin please)
4-? garlic cloves
1 cup pine nuts
1 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese.
Salt and pepper for taste
Wash basil and shake dry. Peel garlic. Put basil, garlic, and pine nuts into food processor and blend. With processor on, pour olive oil into mixture very slowly until all gone. Add cheese, salt and pepper and blend for a few seconds.
Hope you enjoy this!