Pesto

Spring where art thou?  Spring arrived a week ago according to my calendar, yet snow has blanketed my yard and crocus.  With more snow predicted for the week, it’s hard to think that we will ever see tulips or even the vegetable and herb garden again. 

I broke down today and bought basil at the store.  At $3.99 for what amounts to ½ cup of basil, pesto went from being a cheap and quick summer pasta accompaniment, to winter Prozac sans the prescription card.

Pesto

by Jenna North

Makes 1 cup

An union of various techniques and cuisines, this is the pesto I use for saucing pasta and gnocchi.  If using it to top on vegtable soups (i.e. ribollita) then omit the butter and increase olive oil by 3 Tbs.  I have presented 2 variations:

Variation 1

Ingredients:

2 cloves garlic

2 cups basil leaf, fresh

5-6 Tbs. extra virgin olive oil

1 Tbs. lemon juice, fresh

2 Tbs. butter (just at room temp, slightly cool)

Kosher salt

Fresh ground pepper

½ cup parmesan cheese, grated (heavy handed)

¼ cup pine nuts (optional)

In a food processor, add garlic and process until minced.  If adding pine nuts, do so now, and process until just chopped up (3 seconds) – do not make a paste.  Add basil and process until minced.  Add lemon juice, process 5 seconds.  Turn processer on and drizzle olive oil in.  Add cheese, process just until slightly smooth.  Add butter, process until incorporated.  Season with salt and pepper.

Add to cooked and drained pasta or gnocchi, using a little pasta cooking water to loosen the sauce.  Serve immediately.

Variation 2

Ingredients:

1 cloves garlic

½ – 1 cup basil leaf, fresh

2 cups arugula

5-6 Tbs. extra virgin olive oil

1 Tbs. lemon juice, fresh

Kosher salt

Fresh ground pepper

½ cup parmesan cheese, grated (heavy handed)

1 Tbs. butter (optional)

In a food processor, add garlic and process until minced.  Add basil, arugula, lemon juice, and cheese and process 10 seconds.  Turn processer on and drizzle olive oil in.  Season with salt and pepper.

Add pesto and optional butter to cooked and drained pasta or gnocchi, using a little pasta cooking water to loosen the sauce.  Serve immediately.

Cheers!


One comment


Leave a Reply

RSS
LinkedIn
Twitter
Facebook
Instagram
Google+