I love, love, love classic basil pesto and I’ve been meaning to make it for quite some time. My basil plants are huge, though they suffered somewhat from the heat and lack of rain (and my forgetfulness when it comes to watering them). I used this recipe as an inspiration, though I used a food processor rather than chopping everything by hand. Firstly, I do not have a mezzaluna, and secondly, I was way too hungry and impatient to do things the old-fashioned way.
The original recipe is kind of vague, so I interpreted it using what I had on hand and by skimming a few other recipes. Here’s what I used:
about 2 cups of basil leaves, loosely packed
1/2 cup freshly-grated basil
1/3 cup pine nuts
3 cloves of garlic
I began by toasting the pine nuts in a skillet until they began to brown. I was pretty cautious, as I’d read that they burn quickly, They turned out nicely, though. Then I added everything to the food processor.
I transferred the pesto to a small container, then covered it with olive oil.
I served it with tricolor rotini and a simple salad of chopped tomatoes, balsamic vinegar, and freshly-ground pepper.
I now see why pesto is so expensive. It takes a lot of basil! Fortunately, I have plenty more and I anticipate making as much pesto as possible before the frost kills my basil plants.