If you are growing basil in your garden, then you are like me. I have too much basil and need to use it! I decided to start 4 small basil plants in a pot in late May. I think I told you this before, but I went to the store and bought some basil leaves and it cost like 4 dollars! That’s crazy. I hope that you also think it is crazy and have started your own garden…whatever it may be. So here I’ve got tooo much basil and need to use it. Basil Pesto! It is super easy to make and tastes so fresh when you mix it with your favorite pasta.
I went out to the deck where my plants are and grabbed two big handfuls of basil leaves, about 2 packed cups. That didn’t even make much of a dent in the leaves on the plants. Still lots more for spaghetti sauce!
I pureed the ingredients in my little 3 1/2 cup Kitchen Aid food processor. It is really a little work horse in my kitchen. Powerful but inexpensive.
Mixing this up only takes 5 or 10 minutes and it tastes fantastic. If you want to puree some to freeze for the future, just leave out the cheese. Save it in a small jar or even a ziplock bag. Thaw, then add the cheese.
For a kicked up version of this, check out 3 Scoops of Sugar, “Best Herb and Walnut Pesto.” Megan has a great recipe to try.
Basil pesto is a fresh taste and a change of pace from marinara or alfredo sauces. And like I said, super easy too.
- 2 cups fresh basil leaves
- 3 cloves garlic , coarsely chopped
- 1/3 cup walnuts , (pine nuts could also be used)
- 1/2 cup grated parmesan or peccorino romano cheese , (I used Romano)
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- Place basil, garlic and nuts in a food processor and pulse to chop
- Add the cheese and pulse until incorporated
- Slowly add the oil while the processor is on and puree until smooth
- Add salt and pepper, pulse until blended
- Stir into pasta of your choice, (I used about 3 1/2 tbsp for 8 ounces of pasta)