I’m a huge fan of aromatics and herbs so it is no surprise pesto is one of the staple sauces found in my fridge. This homemade Classic Italian Pesto contains the most traditional ingredients namely sweet basil leaves, pine nuts, garlic, parmesan cheese and of course salt and extra virgin olive oil. Some recipes might even call for pecorino (sheep’s milk cheese) but it is not an everyday ingredient we find in our local supermarkets.
In the olden days, pesto was traditionally made in a marble mortar with a wooden pestle but with modern technology i.e food processor, it just makes our lives (and arm muscle) so much easier.
A good pesto (in my opinion) should carry a healthy greenish hue, a smooth creamy consistency and the right balance of brininess. To retain the healthy green in your pesto, simply blanch the basil leaves in boiling water for 10 seconds and that will do the trick.
If you could not get your hands on pine nuts, try substituting it with cashews, walnut or peanuts. Personally, I’ve not tried them but theoretically, they should work.
Click here for my Thai Basil Pesto.
120 g sweet basil – stems removed
3 tbsp pine nuts – lightly toasted
1 large clove garlic – peeled
½ tsp salt
4 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
30 g freshly grated parmesan cheese
Bring a large pot of water to boil and add in basil leaves.
Blanch them quickly for 10 seconds. Transfer into a bowl of cold water, drain well and set aside.
In a food processor or spice grinder, add in basil leaves and the rest of the ingredients.
Blend until a smooth paste is achieved.
Transfer into a jar or airtight container. Pesto can be stored for up to 2 weeks.