Pesto is quick, easy and a great way to use fresh basil.
- 1 bunch of basil, washed and dried (mine yielded 2 packed cups of leaves)
- 1/4 cup walnuts or pine nuts
- 1 garlic clove
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4-1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
Pulse the nuts with the garlic in a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Add the basil leaves and pulse until finely chopped. Add the olive oil in a stream with the motor running until it’s incorporated. Transfer to a bowl and stir in the salt, pepper and parmesan cheese. Taste for seasoning and add more salt and pepper to taste.
If you’re not using your pesto right away, cover with a thin film of olive oil or plastic wrap pressed on the surface to keep the color vibrant. Pesto also freezes well. I like to freeze it in ice cube trays then transfer the cubes to a freezer bag once they’re solid. That way you can thaw only what you need.
Note: I use a food processor, but you can use a blender or even a mortar and pestle.