In the Kitchen‎ > ‎Basics‎ > ‎

Pesto

Pesto is one of my specialties.  The recipe below is not set in stone; there is a bit of wiggle-room, and you don't have to use all of the ingredients listed.  The essentials, however, are basil, pine nuts, garlic, and olive oil.

Some of this is hard to measure ahead of time, and the measurements I give are post-grinding. 

2
cups
puréed basil (about 2 large colanders full)
1
cup
puréed spinach (about 1 bunch)
½
cup
whole walnuts
½
cup
whole pine nuts
1
cup
olive oil
1
head
garlic (raw)
1
head
garlic (roasted)
1
cup
parmesan cheese, coarsely shredded.


salt
  • Run basil and spinach through a food processor with about ¼ cup olive oil to produce about 2 cups of liquid. Mix together in a large bowl and set aside.
  • Coarsely chop walnuts and pine nutes (separately) in a dry food processor (i.e. not the same one you just chopped the basil and spinach in, or do this step first) - just a couple of pulses will do. 
  • Coarsely grate about 1 cup of parmesan. Mix into other dry ingredients (i.e. pine nuts and walnuts) and set aside.
  • Coarsely chop 1 head of garlic (cloves separated, peeled, and cleaned - about 8 - 12 in all depending on the head in question). Set aside.
  • Blend 1 head of roasted garlic into a paste. Set aside.
  • Add roasted garlic and a little olive oil to the basil mixture.  Mix thoroughly.  Mix in other ingredients one at a time, adding more olive oil with each new addition.  Mix in parmesan last. 
  • Add a little kosher salt or sea salt to taste.
  • Makes about 5 cups.
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