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Making Pesto From Scratch Is Easy, Here’s How

Posted By Tipnut On July 23, 2009 @ 7:59 am In Recipes | 1 Comment

The traditional way to make pesto is with a mortar and pestle but here are two tasty recipes (one for basil and the other for rosemary) that you can make with your food processor. I’ve also added a video showing you how to make it with a mortar and pestle along with a few other tips below.

Wooden BowlClassic Basil
Source: Rosalind Creasy’s Recipes from the Garden

3 garlic cloves
2 cups fresh basil leaves
1/4 cup pine nuts or walnuts
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Directions:

  • Combine in a blender or food processor garlic, basil leaves, nuts, salt, pepper and half the oil.
  • Puree slowly adding the remaining oil.
  • Transfer mixture to a bowl and add grated cheese, mix thoroughly.
  • Makes approximately 1 1/4 cups.

Rosemary
Source: Preserving Summer’s Bounty By Susan McClure

1 clove garlic
1/2 cup fresh oregano leaves
2 tablespoons fresh rosemary leaves
1 tablespoon grated orange rind
1 cup chopped scallions
1/4 teaspoon red-pepper flakes
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

  • With a food processor running, put the garlic, oregano, rosemary, and orange rind through the feed tube. Stop the processor and scrape down the sides of the container.
  • Turn the machine on again, add scallions and pepper flakes, then the oil and vinegar. Stop and scrape down the sides of the container.
  • Continue processing with on/off turns until the rosemary is well minced and the mixture has formed a paste.
  • Yield: 1/2 cup

Here’s a good video showing you how to make the traditional pesto genovese using a mortar and pestle. The video is a little long at just under ten minutes, but there’s a lot of info and tips shared, worthwhile watching.



Serving Ideas

  • With Pasta: Approximately 1 to 2 tablespoons pesto per pasta serving. You may need to add some warm water to make the right consistency (use the water pasta was cooked in).
  • Vegetable Soups: Try a teaspoon or two in minestrone, bean or vegetable soups.
  • Rice: Stir into cooked rice and serve, or use as a rice stuffing for vegetables.
  • Meat & Fish: Use as a condiment on cooked meat and fish, lovely!
  • As A Spread: Use on bruschetta, focaccia and breads as a spread.

How To Store

  • Cover with plastic wrap or store in an airtight container and refrigerate.
  • As mentioned in 10 Easy Ways To Preserve Herbs [1], small containers of pesto can be frozen for later use. You can also freeze in ice cube trays, remove cubes once frozen then store in freezer bags.

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[1] 10 Easy Ways To Preserve Herbs: http://tipnut.com/preserve-herbs/

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