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Fresh Basil Pesto

September 8, 2010

There are countless delicious ways to use pesto, so a good basic recipe is essential. Here’s mine! Whip up a batch using fresh summer basil and serve it over gnocchi, cheese tortellini, or spread some on a hot baked baguette instead of butter. It’s also delicious as a dipping sauce for bread–spoon a Tablespoon into a small bowl and add extra olive oil to thin it out for dipping. This recipe makes 1 cup pesto–freeze what you don’t use.

2 cups fresh basil leaves, packed
1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup pine nuts
2 fresh garlic cloves, chopped
Pinch of kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste


  • Combine basil with pine nuts and pulse a few times in a food processor.
  • Add garlic and pulse a few times more.
  • Slowly add olive oil in a constant stream while food processor is on. Stop to scrape down sides of food processor with rubber spatula.
  • Add grated cheese and pulse again until blended.
  • Add pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.
  • Spoon into a container with a lid and store in refrigerator.
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