Friday 12 February 2016

Making Pesto

If you grow your own herbs, making Pesto is ridiculously easy! It is normally made with Basil, but other herbs are also sometimes used. My home-grown over-Wintered Basil was looking quite luxuriant, so I decided to make a batch of Pesto.

To make it you need Basil, Olive Oil, Pine-nuts and Parmesan cheese - and a food-processor!

I don't think it is necessary to use exact quantities of any of the ingredients. I filled the goblet of the food-processor with Basil (removing most of the stalks) and added about 25g of Parmesan and the same amount of Pine-nuts. Then I drizzled in about a tablespoon of Olive oil and blitzed everything for a few seconds. The mixture seemed a bit dry, so I added a little more oil, pouring it in slowly via the opening in the cover of the goblet with the blades turning slowly, until the right texture was achieved - which is really a matter of personal preference. That's it. It could hardly be easier, could it?

The Pesto can of course be used straight away, but we didn't have any immediate requirement for it so I froze it in an ice-cube tray. All that Basil you saw in the first photo made a mere 8 cubes-worth.

When they have frozen solid, I decant them into a plastic bag. The advantage of freezing the Pesto into little cubes like this is that you can use them individually as required. We normally use it in soups, stews and "Bolognaise-ish" sauces. It is particularly nice added to a tub of home-grown Tomato sauce.


  1. I love that you added all those tips about using (left-over) pesto. Can't wait to add them to soups now. And to green tomato sauce that you wrote about in one of your older posts.

  2. Reading this, it has just occurred to me that I have never got around to freezing pesto. Actually, I ought to make huge quantities - I use so much of it. Guess who will be growing extra basil this year? Thanks!

  3. Those are some gorgeous leaves - I can't believe you grew it indoors in such quantity! I still have some presto from my basil harvest last year in the freezer. In 2014, practically all of the basil became infected with mildew, so this past seasons harvest (and pesto) has been especially appreciated.

    1. I love the typo, Margaret - "...I still have some presto..." My recipe for Pesto is certainly Presto!

  4. If I ever get enough basil I'll try this.

  5. It's wonderful made with garlic scapes, too!


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