Last of the Basil Pesto
by Chef Robin White
Yesterday I was looking at the ton of basil I have in my garden. I decided it’s time to get it into the food processor to put up for the winter before I lost it to brown and boring. Just touching the leaves released the fresh smell of basil into the air. It was the perfect time to get this project completed.
Having just relocated from Sonoma to Chicagoland, my home for the next 2 years, I feel comforted in the fact that I can think of California summers this snowy winter when I use my fresh frozen pesto in my favorite recipes.
The beauty of Pesto is that it can be easily frozen or will last over a week in the fridge. I freeze pesto in ice cube trays. Each cube holds about a tablespoon and it just enough to add to sauces and chicken soup for that extra zing of garden freshness.
-2 cups fresh basil, packed into the cup
-1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil, the very best one you can find, the oil matters
-1 tablespoon pine nuts, because pine nuts are so expensive this next step helps a lot
-3 tablespoons Parmigiano-Reggiano, or the best you can find
-4 walnut halves, this helps with the nut taste and fools your palate
-2 teaspoons minced fresh garlic
– and my secret weapon to keep it very green and light… 1 tablespoon exactly, club soda
-a great sea salt, such as grey salt
-freshly ground black pepper – salt to taste
Puree all the ingredients in a blender or food processor until smooth and in about 1 minute and your done.
How easy was that?