Saturday, September 29, 2012

Pesto

 
I grew one basil plant this summer. It wasn't in the best spot in the garden. A couple of volunteer sunflowers popped up in front of the basil when I wasn't paying attention and it didn't get enough sun.  I was still recovering from my spine surgery, and I couldn't bend over or move the flowers. Anyway, I just love sunflowers so I couldn't remove their sunny faces. They're so happy!
 
My basil plant was sort of puny, and had little leaves. I pinched the buds off all summer, and eventually had enough leaves to make one batch of pesto. I don't know what happens to basil when you add garlic, cheese, olive oil and pine nuts, but I do know that it's magic. Magic that I freeze in ice cube trays and then place in ziplock bags. Magic that I can have on homemade pizza or pasta in the middle of winter when we have snow on the ground.
 
It's magic.
 
3 cups basil leaves
 
1/2 cup olive oil
 
1/2 cup parmesean cheese
 
1/2 cup toasted pine nuts (toasted is WAY better)
 
Three or four garlic cloves
 
Salt and pepper
 
Place whole, peeled garlic cloves in a food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Turn processor off and add basil leaves, cheese, toasted pine nuts, salt and pepper. Pulse until almost smooth. Slowly drizzle in olive oil and when incorporated turn off the processor. You don't want it absolutely smooth. A little character please...
 
Back to business... Spoon the pesto into old fashioned, plastic ice cube trays. Place in freezer until frozen. Then pop the pesto cubes out of the trays and place into ziplock bags. Delicious!
 


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