I’ve been making a batch of pesto every weekend for the last several weeks so that I’ll have pesto during winter. Eddy and I LOVE pesto. Pasta with pesto, bread with pesto, shrimp pesto pizza…. YUM!
Several years ago, I made a big jar of pesto, thinking that it may last through the winter. Wrong! Eddy and I finished it before the year ended.
Since then, I err on the side of caution and freeze several jars of pesto.
Making pesto is easy. I use the following recipe from Mediterranean Basin Cooking by Santo & Mabel Formica.
- In a food processor, add 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil, 2/2 tsp. salt, 1/4 tsp. pepper, 2 cloves garlic, and 2 tbsp. toasted pine nuts.
- Blend for 1 minute, then slowly add 1 tightly packed cup of basil leaves; blend for 2 minutes.
- Slowly add 1/4 cup grated Parmesan while continuing to blend for an additional minute.
Since I’m a bit lazy, I just pour pesto in a container and freeze. Some people prefer to pour pesto in an ice cube tray to make frozen pesto cubes, which they then place in a freezer bag.
Last weekend, when I was making pesto, I ran out of pine nuts. I thought about moving several thousand pounds of steel, i.e., my car, to get more pine nuts, but instead, I used locally grown pecans that I preserved last year. Guess what? It turned out great! I think I may make basil pecan pesto from now on.
I used the following recipe to make basil pecan pesto:
- In a food processor, finely chop 1/2 cup toasted pecans.
- Add 2 cups packed fresh basil leaves, 1/3 cup Parmesan, 2 garlic cloves, and
- 1/2 tsp. sea salt and process.
- Slowly add 2/3 cup olive oil in a steady stream and process for about 10 more seconds.
I used basil from Vang Family Farm near Hensley and garlic from Armstead Mountain Farm Near Jerusalem to make both recipes. For basil pecan pesto, I used pecans from Hardin Farm near Grady.
Winter without pesto is a sad affair, so do yourself a favor and make and freeze pesto!