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PESTO

By Caroline Chirichella - Here is a little history about our dear friend, Pesto. Pesto originated in Genova, in the Liguria region, northern Italy. It traditionally consists of crushed garlic, fresh basil and pine nuts mixed with olive oil, Parmigiano Reggiano and Fiore Sardo. My Pesto Genovese it a mostly traditional, except for the fact that I sometimes make it with walnuts instead of pine nuts. There are so many variations of pesto, traditional, tomato, sun dried tomato, spinach, cilantro, arugula… I love pesto and if you have yet to experience it, I encourage you to try these recipes with some nice al dente pasta and I dare you not to fall in love with it the way I have!

PESTO GENOVESE

3 large cloves of garlic, chopped coarsely

½-3/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil

1/4 – ½ cup pine nuts or walnuts (taste it, some people like more, some less)

Crushed red pepper

Salt +Pepper

Full head of fresh basil

Warm garlic very slowly in the olive oil until it gets just slightly golden. DO NOT BROWN. Add crushed red pepper to taste, add nuts to the oil, brown very lightly. Let it all cool. Put basil leaves and thin stems into the food processor or blender. Add oil, garlic and nut mix, salt and pepper to taste and process. Some people like a coarse pesto which is more traditional, others a smoother one. This would traditionally be made in a mortar with a pestle and would be coarse (some people enjoy using this traditional method). Either way, it’s delicious.

TOMATO PESTO

Two cups of fresh tomatoes (any size, cherry, plum, even large, just chopped coarsely)

3 large cloves of garlic, chopped coarsely

½-3/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil

¼ cup pine nuts or walnuts (to taste, some people like more, some people like less)

Crushed red pepper

Salt +Pepper

Full head of fresh basil

Warm garlic very slowly in the olive oil until it gets just slightly golden. DO NOT BROWN. Add crushed red pepper to taste, add nuts to the oil, brown very lightly. Let it all cool. Put basil in the blender, chop it a bit. Then add your garlic nut mix, salt and pepper and tomatoes last. Try to keep them a little chunky. This also makes an amazing topping for bruschetta

Buon appetito!

SOURCE

 

IMAGE

Description
English: this is a picture of self made pesto in a mortar.
Date May 2008
Source Own work
Author Flusel