Sunday, August 22, 2010

Pesto Time!

I have been waiting for this all summer. Actually, since the spring. Way back when I first started the basil seeds in the kitchen. Here they are, right before being transplanted outdoors.

And who can forget all those mornings when I would go out and pick baby slugs off of them? Slug soup, anyone? They got chewed so badly, all that was left were some deformed leaves and stumps. But I persevered and eventually the plants got big enough that the slugs gave up (or maybe I drowned them all?). I have been rewarded with a bumper crop of basil.

Which is good, because I love basil. Especially in pesto. I went out and bought some real Parmesan cheese and a fortune's worth of pine nuts. Today I set about making pesto. Now, I could have sworn that the last time I made it, I did so in my blender. But maybe not. Because it didn't go so well, today. Maybe I actually made it in my food processor. The same food processor I thought I wasn't using, and gave away on Freecycle. Darn me, anyway. I did manage to make a small batch of pesto, after about an hour of trying with the blender. I probably burnt out its motor. So now I am trying to scare up a food processor so I can make a LOT more pesto. Here is the batch I made, today. I put it in an ice cube tray to freeze.

Then I put it into freezer bags. I got to use the Food Saver I got off Freecycle. And it works! Woo hoo! That saved me $100. I can use that money to buy the bags.

Good thing pesto tastes better than it looks. Can't wait to try some on a batch of fresh made pasta. Pure heaven! Here's the recipe I used. I found it on


2 cups packed home grown basil
1/2 cup toasted pine nuts (toast them in a pan over medium heat, using no oil)
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese (the real thing, not in a shaker)
3 cloves crushed garlic
1/2 cup olive oil

Put into a food processor first 4 ingredients. Pulse to blend.
Slowly add oil through feed tube to make a nice paste.
Spoon into ice cube trays and freeze. Remove from trays and store in freezer bags, in the freezer, until ready for use. Take out only as many cubes as you need for that meal. For even longer term storage I put them into vacuum freezer bags.

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