Sunday, April 26, 2009

Basic Pesto Sauce

This recipe comes straight from my grandfather's collection and has its origins in Liguria, Italy.

2 1/2 cups fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup pine nuts (may be substituted with sweet walnuts or shelled almonds)
2 cloves fresh garlic, chopped
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
a pinch of salt
freshly ground pepper, to taste

Blend all ingredients until a paste-like consistency is achieved. If fresh basil is unattainable, use 2 cups fresh parsley, plus 2 tablespoons dried basil. The condiment can be stored by covering with olive oil and refrigerating for future use.

Variations: use of different types of grated cheeses; orange or lemon rind; 1-2 tablespoons of heavy cream; eliminating garlic, including ricotta; adding a few anchovies

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