Pesto is one of my most favorite sauces ever! I can have pesto dotted on a pizza, added to a salad dressing or spread on a sandwich. The nutty flavor from the pine nuts and aroma of freshly chopped basil just makes it divine all rounded with olive oil.
The last time I made pesto, I decided to add a some macadamia nuts to the pesto which gives the pesto more body and a bit of a chewy after taste. It was yummy!!
2 big bunches of fresh basil
3 cloves of garlic
1/4 cup of pine nuts
3/4 cup of parmesan cheese; grated (fresher the better)
2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
Handful of macadamia nuts
Salt and Black Pepper to taste
- Coarsely chop all the ingredients in a food processor other than the oil, salt and pepper.
-Slowly add the olive oil to chopped ingredients and mix till well blended (the oil should not separate but emulsify)
-Add salt and pepper to taste.
Tip 1: You can freeze left over pesto into cubes. Freeze them in ice trays then keep them in Ziploc bags in the freezer. The olive oil acts as a preservative. Yes, it will not taste as good as the fresh kind but better than having store bought fare.
Tip 2: When you want to use the pesto just leave two or three cubes to thaw at room temperature. Under no circumstances microwave the pesto or heat it. Pesto is usually best added to the sauce right at the end so as to not destroy the flavor.