Also, it is prime basil season out there, at least up here in Portland. I was at the farmer's market and I could not get away from the sweet, herb-y smell of fresh basil. One stand was selling three bunches of basil for $5. (The equivalent of at least 5 cups of basil leaves.) I couldn't resist--especially because I just happened to have some Parmesan in the fridge. I was pesto ready and I couldn't deny it any longer.
I first tried to use the Magic Bullet that I had recently received as a gift, but no dice. I whipped out my mini-food processor and turned my basil into pesto in no time. This is an easy and quick recipe that is very flexible. I tried to use as little olive oil as possible, since I find the store-bought kind too greasy. That is the added benefit of making your own--you get to make it precisely the way you like it.
- 4 cups packed fresh basil leaves, washed and dried
- 2/3 cup to 1 1/2 cup olive oil, depending on your preference (use olive oil that tastes good on it's own)
- 1 cup toasted nuts, chopped (walnuts, pecans, almonds, pine nuts)
- 5 or more cloves of garlic, or more to taste
- 1 cup grated Parmesan
- 1 teaspoon salt, or more to taste
- Put basil, olive oil, nuts and garlic and salt in food processor.
- Blend until combined
- Add Parmesan and blend for a few seconds until incorporated.
To store: cover with surface completely with plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to a week.