Everyone needs a classic pesto recipe in their repertoire. Basil is probably my favorite herb, so to have an amazing sauce where I can use up all of my fresh basil leaves is fabulous. Add some garlic, olive oil, pine nuts, cheese and salt to those fresh leaves, and you can take pasta or any number of other recipes to the next level. I have a plan to make a new recipe with my pesto later this week, but I wanted to start out by giving you the basic sauce that will work as the foundation. One thing I’ve done in the past is serve pasta three ways so everyone has something to enjoy. If you make up this pesto, a marinara (meat or meatless) and a brown butter with parmesan, you suddenly have your own pasta bar with something for everyone.
Can you see one of the reason I decided to start putting together pesto recipes? Our basil is going crazy. Really, I should call up some friends and have them gather up some too. I don’t think we have ever had this much basil to manage.
Classic Pesto Recipe
2 oz fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup extra-virign olive oil
2 Tbsp pine nuts
2 cloves garlic cloves, peeled
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup freshly grated parmigiano-raggiano cheese
2 Tbsp Romano cheese (substitute with 2 Tbsp parmesan if needed)
Put fresh basil, olive oil, pine nuts, garlic cloves and salt into a food processor or blender and grind until almost creamy. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and stir in the grated cheeses.
I always want to encourage you to get your kids helping in the kitchen. I think it is really powerful to have them gathering food from the garden too. If you are not comfortable making an entire garden, an herb garden is a great place to start.