Basil Pesto




Introduction: Basil Pesto

About: Polymath and idiot. Mostly idiot.

A basil pesto is a wonderful way to preserve the taste of basil and enrich it with complementing flavours.

Step 1: Ingredients

• 50 basil leaves
• 200 grams pine nuts
• 250 ml olive oil
• 2 cloves garlic
• 1 teaspoon salt
• 1 handful freshly grated Pecorino/ Parmesan

Step 2: Equipment

• Mortar and pestle
• Kitchen scale
• Kitchen knife
• Cheese grater/ peeler
• Mason jar

Additional equipment:

• Garlic dicer

Step 3: Preparation

If you want to store the pesto for up to 5 days, pound all 200 grams of pine seeds. For a longer storage time pound only 50 grams and add the rest right before usage. This way you have a layer of olive oil sealing the food. To add more taste you could even roast the pine nuts in a pan for 2 minutes.

Step 4:

Peel the garlic cloves and remove any green. Dice them into the mortar.

Step 5:

Grate the cheese. I used 50 grams Pecorino, 50 grams Parmesan and 50 grams Beaufort. Add to the mixture and pound again. When ready, turn out into a bowl.

Step 6:

Pat the basil leaves dry, stack them upon each other, roll them to a cigar and cut them into small pieces. Add them to the mortar with the salt. Pound until coarsely chopped.

Step 7: Instructions:

Add both mixtures together in a bowl. While stirring, pour in some of the olive oil. Adding the olive oil slowly will help it emulsify. If you want to use the basil pesto within the next 5 days, add all the olive oil until fully incorporated and smooth. For a storage of up to 3 months in the freezer in a clean mason jar, keep 50 ml until you are done, then drizzle the remaining oil over the top. Thaw when needed and stir with the remaining 150 grams of pounded pine nuts.

Enjoy your meal!

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    5 years ago

    Pesto is wonderful. And basil is easy to grow. I've made variations by substituting a different green or nut. I actually tried mustard greens which made for a very pungent sauce. Roasting the garlic might have toned down the mustard pesto. Walnuts are an economical substitute for the pine nuts, and almonds and pecans are good candidates, too. Roasting or toasting nuts is great advice for practically any application. And, I freeze my pesto in 3 oz. Solo cups. Three cheers for pesto!

    Joerg Engels
    Joerg Engels

    Reply 5 years ago

    This is actually another reason why only 1/4 of the pine nuts are used for longer storage, you can add whatever is appropiate for your dinner or available during the season. Pistachios add a fresh green tone aside from a great taste. Tried to freeze small portions in an ice cube tray for easy usage but you will never get rid of the smell in the plastic.