Fresh Pesto - Pioneer Woman
- 2 cups packed fresh basil leaves
- 1 clove garlic
- 1/4 cup pine nuts, lightly toasted (see note)
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1/2 cup finely grated parmesan cheese
- 1/2 cup olive oil, more for storing
Adapted from thepioneerwoman.com
Add basil leaves to a food processor or blender.
Throw in grated Parmesan, pine nuts, garlic, salt, and pepper.
Turn on the food processor and drizzle in enough olive oil to get it to the consistency you want.
To store pesto, add a thin layer of extra olive oil to the top (to prevent any air from getting to it), cover with a lid or plastic wrap and refrigerate 1 to 2 weeks. (You can also freeze up to 1 month).
Uses for pesto:
* Used it as a pizza sauce: just spread it on the pizza crust as you would regular pizza sauce. Especially perfect with veggie pizza or chicken pizza. Yum.
* Stirred it into quiche filling. The quiche was filled with leeks, mushrooms, and Swiss cheese…a generous tablespoon of pesto completely transformed it.
* Mixed it with heavy cream and poured it over pasta a fresh tomatoes. A triumph.
* Stirred it into a chicken pasta salad: bowtie pasta, chicken chunks, lima beans, peas, carrots, corn, with a mayo/sour cream/half-and-half dressing. A generous addition of basil made it over-the-top irresistible.
* Mixed it with mayonnaise for a perfect panini spread. Grilled chicken. Tomato slices. Chopped olives. Pesto mayonnaise. And the girl was so, so happy.
* Added a generous amount to the sauce for my chicken parmigiana last night. A tablespoon wasn’t enough. Two tablespoons wasn’t enough. I think I wound up adding about 1/3 cup before it was all over…and the sauce was better than ever. I closed my eyes and gave thanks for basil.