Monday, 29 March 2010

Quick & Easy Pesto

I must admit, I am always slightly horrified by the amount of people who buy rather than make their own pesto, simply because it's so easy. It also tastes about 100 times nicer when its home made. To use a shop-bought comparison, it's a bit like the difference between the stuff in the store cupboard aisle and the stuff in the fridge section. 

Additionally, if you use a blender, it takes a maximum of 10 minutes to make, so there really is no excuse. I find it keeps for about a week in the fridge and actually, also freezes remarkably well - it will keep for up to three months.

Ingredients (makes approx 150g – enough for 4 people)
80g basil, leaves only
25g pine nuts
3 cloves garlic
1 tsp Maldon sea salt
50g freshly grated Parmesan
100-200ml extra virgin olive oil
squeeze of lemon juice
First, toast the pine nuts in a dry frying pan for about 3 minutes, turning regularly to make sure they don’t catch. Then, set them aside.

Add the basil, garlic, salt, pepper, parmesan and pine nuts to the blender and then turn on. Slowly pour the olive oil in until the mixture is smooth. I started with 100ml and then added a little more as it wasn’t quite enough, but the amount will vary from batch to batch so use your judgement.

You can also make the pesto by hand, using a mortar and pestle, but it does take quite a bit longer. Chop the garlic, and pound to a paste, then add the basil, about 5 leaves at a time. work in the cheese and then stir in the olive oil until you have a thick, dense paste. As with above, the amount of olive oil will vary from batch to batch.

1 comment:

  1. That color is so bright it hurts the eyes. It is really beautiful. I love pesto and your recipe is wonderful. I hope you had a great weekend. Blessings...Mary