Pesto alla genovese
Today I’m sharing a simple and quick recipe! My herb garden was getting too big and it is a shame to let it go to waste, so I decided to make pesto from the basil leaves.
Pesto or pesto alla genovese, which means “from Genoa” or “Genuese”, is an Italian sauce. Originally, pesto was made by grinding Ligurian olive oil; basil leaves from Pra, a neighborhood in Genoa; garlic from Vessalico; sea salt; pecorino and / or Parmesan cheese; and pine nuts. The ingredients were crushed into a smooth sauce in a mortar. Pesto therefore owes its name to this method of preparation, because it means “grinded”.
- 30 gr Parmesan cheese
- 30 gr fresh basil leafs
- 2 el pine nuts
- 1/2 garlic clove
- salt to taste
- extra virgin olive oil
Roast the pine nuts in a dry frying pan until they are golden brown. Make sure that you don’t leave them in the pan for too long, because the oils that are released during the roasting will continue roasting the pine nuts, even after you’ve removed the pan from the heat. Wash the basil and remove the leaves from the stems. You do not want to grind the stems, because this makes your pesto very bitter. Peel the garlic and chop it into coarse pieces. Grate the Parmesan cheese.
Grab a food processor and grind the basil leaves, garlic, pine nuts and Parmesan cheese to a smooth mass. Add the olive oil little by little, until it has the correct thickness. Taste the pesto and add salt and possibly pepper to taste. Note that the pesto will taste even better if you let it stand longer. To keep the pesto tasting great for a long time, it is best to store it in a clean, sterile container. I use a jar out of the hot dishwasher (make sure it’s dry). Let the pot cool down upside down to push out all the air, to make the jar sealed vacuum.