A simple classic staple!
3 cups, Fresh Basil leaves
3 cloves, Garlic
1 cup, freshly grated Parmesan Cheese
1/3 cup, Pine Nuts
1/2 cup, Olive Oil
Kosher salt and ground Black Pepper to taste
optional: 1/4 teaspoon, red pepper flakes
First get all of your ingredients together, here is the full cast of characters. I like to lay out all of my ingredients when making pesto because its such a quick recipe. I want to make sure to have everything ready and on hand.
Then separate your basil leaves, roughly chop your garlic cloves and add to chopper or food processor. Both devices work great, so use what you have on hand or what you find to be easiest. Don’t try to use a blender…it won’t work.
Then pulse a few times until the mixture is well combined, like this.
Next add your pine nuts and grated Parmesan cheese.
Pulse a couple of more times until well combined, then add your olive oil and combine once again. This step is important because this is when the sauce really starts to come together. The smells by now should be out of this world. The garlic and Basil alone are so lovely. You’ll definitely have garlic breath after eating this, but it’s oh sooooo worth it.
After the addition of the olive oil the consistency should look something like this. Now, this part is crucial, add your kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper and TASTE! If you don’t have enough salt it wont taste quite right. Add a little, then taste until you get it to your liking. Then, I like to add red pepper flake for a bit of heat, about a 1/4 teaspoon is my preference. Feel free to leave that out if heat isn’t your thing. Combine one last time.
Now, taste again. I use this opportunity to taste as much as needed in order to get it just right 🙂 and this is PERFECT. Hope you like this as much as we do.
Here it is all finished, ready to be dressed up however you like.
We decided to toss it with some lovely Capellini pasta and topped it with some freshly grated Parmesan cheese. Feel free to add chicken or shrimp to the pasta, the options are endless.
Here’s the recipe print-out