End of Summer Fresh Basil Pesto
It’s been a great summer… lots of playing mixed in with visits from (and to) friends, vacations, long days, bike rides…ah, summer. Yet, though I would wish for perhaps a few more weeks of summer, I’m looking forward to the clear nights, crisp days and spice-filled season of fall. Before jumping right in to fall, though, I decided to use up a ton of the basil growing in my herb garden and make a batch of fresh basil pesto. It was so tasty and delicious I am already making plans for next year’s garden to have three times the amount of basil so I can start stockpiling this stuff in the freezer. Wow. It was fresh and fragrant and garlicy and cheesy… perfection, really, and so easy. The pesto’s done in the time it takes to boil the pasta.
In addition to using as a pasta sauce, pesto is great as a sandwich spread, tossed over grilled veggies or swirled into minestrone soup. Enjoy.
Fresh Basil Pesto, adapted from Simply Recipes
2 cups of basil leaves, packed
1/3 cup pine nuts
1/2 cup grated parmesan or romano cheese
1/2 cup olive oil (I used extra virgin, but whatever you have is fine)
2-3 cloves garlic, minced (I used three and loved it, but beware that the garlic flavor is fairly sharp because it’s raw)
salt and pepper, to taste (I didn’t use either as the cheese was salty and the garlic added the heat and spice)
In a food processor, pulse together pine nuts, basil, and garlic cloves until finely chopped. Stream in olive oil, stopping to scrape down sides. Add cheese, and pulse together. If the pesto is too thick for your liking, stream in more oil, one tablespoon at a time. Taste for salt and pepper, and add as desired.