I know…pesto is usually ones of those things that you typically see in spring and summer recipes. But the other night, I wanted something a little fresh, almost citrusy (but fast and easy)…something to add some brightness into an otherwise dull, gray day – yes, we occasionally have those in Southern California too! I went to Trader Joe’s and saw both an actual basil plant and a box of organic basil…at the same price point. I ended up going organic.
In a flash, I whipped up this pesto in my handy food processor – which everyone should have by the way!
And minutes later, we were having a delicious dinner of penne with pesto and spinach salad on the side. Next time, I’m going to toss in some halved grape tomatoes into the pasta…with the green and red together, it’s gonna get even more festive up in here!
- ½ cup toasted walnuts
- 3 tablespoons or approximately 9 cloves of garlic
- 5 cups of fresh basil leaves, packed
- 1 teaspoon of kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
- 1½ cup of olive oil - the best you can afford
- 1 cup of grated parmesan cheese (freshly grated is the best)
- Add the toasted walnuts and garlic into the food processor first.
- Process for about 30 seconds or until the two ingredients are well blended
- Add in basil leaves next along with salt and pepper
- Process again for another 45 seconds or so
- WIth processor still running, slowly add olive oil in until the pesto really starts coming together and is pureed
- Add in parmesan and process again for another minute
- Use pesto right away on your favorite pasta - remember to save some pasta water to use to incorporate pesto with pasta.
- Or refrigerate/freeze with a thin layer of olive oil drizzled on top of pesto.