Monday, December 27, 2010

Fresh Homemade Pesto

Pesto is delicious in a variety of dishes. It can make a great pasta sauce for hot cooked pasta or add lots of flavor to a chilled pasta salad. Mixed with mayo, it transforms into fresh aioli to spread on a panini. I'm posting the recipe now so that you and I can use it in the future.

Fresh Homemade Pesto
Recipe adapted from Ina Garten


1/4 cup walnuts, toasted

1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted (you can also skip the pine nuts and just use 1/2 cup walnuts)

2-9 cloves of garlic (the recipe calls for 9 cloves, but when using the pesto for a party, only use a few cloves so the garlic won't overwhelm your guests)

5 cups fresh basil leaves, rinsed and packed

1 1/2 cups olive oil

3/4 of a small wedge of parmesan cheese, cut into 1 inch pieces

1 teaspoon salt

Pepper to taste


Toast the nuts for about 6 minutes by placing them in a small pan and turning the heat to medium. Shake the pan several times to mix them around.

Place the parmesan in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Process for 30 seconds. Empty the bowl and set the parmesan aside.

In the empty food processor bowl, add the toasted walnuts, pine nuts and garlic. Process for about 30 seconds.

Add the basil leaves, salt and if you wish, pepper.

With the processor running, slowly pour the olive oil into the bowl through the feed tube and process until the pesto is finely pureed.

Add the Parmesan and pulse until everything is combined.

To store the pesto, pour olive oil on top, cover and save in the fridge.


  1. Mmm I love pesto. It makes everything better.

  2. My dream for next spring is to grow a giant herb garden. That way I can grow enough basil to make pesto all summer long! Yum, yum, yum.

  3. This looks so beautiful! Nothing like homemade.