Fresh Basil Pesto

Adapted from The Barefoot Contessa

We have tried various pesto recipes – some with walnuts, some with pine nuts, some with no nuts. This one uses both walnuts and pine nuts and the flavors are terrific together. All the classic uses apply, but if you’re tired of using it on pasta and sandwiches, try it to liven up soups, salads or even as a dip with a good chunk of bread.

  • 1/4 cup walnuts
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 6 garlic cloves
  • 3 cups fresh basil leaves, washed, dried and packed
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh black pepper
  • 3/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Place walnuts, pine nuts and garlic in a food processor fitted with a steel chopping blade. Process until finely chopped and well blended. Add the basil leaves, salt and pepper and begin running the motor of the food processor again. Slowly add the oil through the feed tube and process until very smooth. Add the cheese and process for about a minute more. Enjoy!
  • Quick Tips
  • 1. Try toasting the walnuts and pine nuts for a more complex nutty flavor.
  • 2. Pesto is a beautiful green color when it’s fresh, but it can quickly turn dark brown. In order to preserve the bright green color, store it with a layer of plastic wrap applied directly to the surface. The air is what makes the basil turn dark, so preventing air from getting in by using plastic wrap helps keep the color.
  • 3. Store the pesto in the fridge for up to a week or in the freezer for months. If you’d like to defrost it in small quantities, try freezing it in ice cube trays. Once frozen, pop out the pesto cubes and store in a labeled plastic freezer bag. Use as needed.

Preparation time: 10 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 2 cups

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