|Pesto packed in glass jars|
|Fresh, homemade pesto|
Homemade Basil and Pinenut Pesto
YOU WILL NEED
(Note: I use Australian standard size measuring cups but recipe works as well with US measuring cups)
1/3 cup pinenuts
½ cup Parmesan cheese (cut from block cheese)
2 cups fresh basil leaves, tightly packed
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
2 medium cloves of garlic, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Wash and dry containers for storing your pesto.
2. Lightly toast pinenuts (in oven on baking tray or in dry frypan over medium heat on stove top) until they begin to change colour to golden. Immediately take off heat and place in a container to cool.
3. Put cheese in food processor and pulse until consistency of large crumbs. Remove from processor and set aside.
4. Rinse basil leaves in cold water and dry. (Pat dry with paper towels or spin in salad spinner.)
5. Place leaves and toasted pinenuts in blender and pulse until leaves are roughly chopped. Add olive oil and pulse until the mixture is smooth. Scrape down sides of blender as needed.
6. Add the cheese, garlic salt and pepper and pulse until blended. Scrape down sides of blender as needed.
|Basil leaves, grated Parmesan and toasted pinenuts|
7. Transfer pesto into prepared containers and seal with lids. Pesto will keep fresh for a about a week in the refrigerator. If you want to keep it any longer, it’s a good idea to freeze it. (Makes about three cups of pesto.)
• Keep an eye on pinenuts when toasting them, they can turn colour very quickly and burn. Stir during the process and when done immediately remove not just from the heat but also from the pan/tray as they can keep on cooking and can burn.
• Adjust the amount of garlic to suit your taste and the pungency of the garlic you’re using.
• You may notice a film of oil forming on the top of the pesto as you pack it in containers. This is a good thing as it helps preserve the pesto and keep it from discolouring.
|Basil growing in my garden|
• You can freeze your pesto in ice cube trays for a small sized serve. When frozen eject from trays and put plastic bags, seal and keep in freezer. (Or be lazy like I am and keep them in the tray covered with plastic wrap and squeeze out as required.)
• This recipe is easily doubled, depending on the size of your food processor bowl.
|Garlic from my garden|
|In ice cube tray ready to freeze|