I love the flavor of freshly made pesto, and I think you will too. Why buy store made pesto when it is so easy to make and you can control the ingredients to ensure everything tastes fresh? I roast the garlic before adding it, but traditional recipes use raw minced garlic cloves (rule of thumb is one clove per cup of basil). Prep time (if you don’t roast the garlic) is only 5-10 minutes.Ingredients: 2-3 cups of packed fresh basil leaves 1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil 1/2 cup of grated Parmesan-Reggiano cheese 1/2 a head of garlic (I use more garlic because I roast it first and I love garlic) 1/3 cup of unsalted pine nuts Salt & pepper combined together – add to taste
Instructions: Add the basil in a food processor and pulse – as the herbs start to blend add pine nuts, garlic and half the olive oil. Pulse 2-3 times then add the cheese and remaining oil and pulse again until ingredients are blended – taste and add salt / pepper mix to enhance the flavor.
Once the sauce has combined it is ready to be poured over a pasta or you may refrigerate and keep to have later with your meal. If I can make one suggestion, it would be to ensure you have very fresh, deep green basil leaves.
NOTE: I roast a head of garlic (takes ~30 minutes at 400°). This is an extra step and not part of a traditional pesto, but I like the flavor of roasted garlic.