Wow do we have fab­u­lous recipes from the gar­den for you!

Basil pesto

Oh my my! This fan­tas­tic basil pesto defines ver­sa­til­i­ty. Use it on pas­ta, freeze it in tra­di­tion­al ice cube trays to use in soups this win­ter, or sim­ply enjoy it on toast­ed French rounds with a nice glass of Chardon­nay or Mer­lot. Love­ly.


Clas­sic Pesto Recipe

2 cups fresh basil leaves

2 table­spoons pine nuts

2 cups grat­ed Parme­san cheese*

3 gar­lic cloves, minced (4 if small)

1/2 cup olive oil

*You can sub­sti­tute Asi­a­go or Romano cheese for sharp­er taste.

Dollop of basic pesto
Dol­lop of basic pesto

Blend basil leaves in food proces­sor fit­ted with stan­dard blade. Add pine nuts, cheese and gar­lic in the order list­ed until a thick paste forms. Add olive oil to the proces­sor by driz­zling in steady stream to mix through. Scrape sides as need­ed. Pesto should be the con­sis­ten­cy of a smooth paste. Cov­er and keep refrig­er­at­ed, will last up to five days.

Oth­er vari­a­tions

If you pre­fer less cheese, scale back to 1/2 cup of cheese and add more nuts (1/2 cup of nuts com­pared to the pre­vi­ous 2 table­spoons.

This sug­ges­tion is from Col­in Cowie’s fab­u­lous book Effort­less Ele­gance: “puree oil-cured black olives and extra vir­gin olive oil for a quick and easy ‘pesto.’” Anoth­er sug­ges­tion: “Puree arti­choke hearts with gar­lic, pine nuts, and extra vir­gin olive oil.”  (Great book by the way. Every­thing I’ve ever made from it is fab­u­lous!)

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