I was totally inspired to make pesto this week after one of my favorite people in the universe, Christy, aka “The Chicken Whisperer”, gave me some superb basil from her garden. She also handed over a few sprigs of rosemary which The Cheese decided to use on the perfect steak that went with this pesto sauce. Aside from talking her chickens into laying tons of eggs, Christy The Chicken Whisperer grows some pretty amazing herbs.
Here’s how to make it…
2 cups of Basil
1/4 cup, plus 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons pine nuts
1 clove garlic
1/4 cup olive oil
The juice of 1 lemon (about 3 – 4 tablespoons)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
(You can just go ahead and ignore the fact that the garlic isn’t in the picture. It wasn’t feeling photogenic today.)
Take all the leaves off of the basil stems.
Add 2 cups of basil to a food processor. To measure the basil, just shove a good handful into a measuring cup.
With the basil, add your salt, pepper, garlic, lemon juice and the olive oil. The garlic would only be photographed if it was by itself.
You can literally throw the whole clove it just like that.
Blend everything together until it becomes a paste.
Grate up the Parmesan cheese. I used a zester or microplane so that the cheese is finely grated and you don’t end up with chunks.
Add the pine nuts and all the Parmesan cheese.
Blend again until smooth.
TASTE the pesto to see if it needs a little more salt or pepper. The Cheese thought this batch needed an extra squeeze of lemon.
While we are drizzling this over our steak and tomatoes tonight, you can use this over pasta, chicken, fish, or spread on little toasts. You can also mix in 1/4 cup of mayo and spread it on bread to make a pesto mozzarella and tomato sandwich. Holy delicious.