Pesto Perfection

This is one of those no-measure recipes – just toss a couple of ingredients together in a food processor, pulse and enjoy.  The reason?  Because I grow basil in my backyard, it rarely yields enough for the ‘1 cup, packed’ that I often see in other recipes.  I’m usually lucky if I can get a small handful of useable basil!


Ingredients:
  • Fresh basil leaves*
  • Parmesan
  • Pine nuts
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 raw garlic clove (optional)
  • Salt & Pepper, to taste
  • A squeeze of lemon juice, to taste (optional)
Preparation:
  • Combine basil, parmesan, pine nuts, oil and garlic (if using) into food processor.
  • Pulse until well-combined.
  • Do a taste test and season with salt, pepper and lemon juice, if needed.
Notes:
  • *If you’re planning on keeping the pesto for a few days, prevent the basil from browning by shocking the leaves in water first (Just a warning: I believe this reduces the herb’s flavour).
  • To shock, prepare an ice water bath.  In a separate pot, bring water to boil.  Add basil leaves and allow the heat to wilt the basil (no more than 5-10 seconds).  Strain away the boiling water and quickly transfer the basil leaves to your ice bath.  They should still be bright green.  Allow the basil to cool.  Strain and prepare pesto using above instructions.

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