When I make pesto, I suggest a proportion of 4 parts Parmesan to 1 part Romano cheese to keep the flavors in balance. A well rounded pesto s never made only with Parmesan in my opinion.
The finest basil also uses freshly-picked basil leaves,but if in short supply,I substitute a mixture of dried basil and fresh parsley or fresh spinach.Fresh basil leaves can be frozen for future use.
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2 cfresh basil leaves,chopped or 2 cups fresh spinach or flatleaf parsley and 3 tablespoons dried basil
3/4 cextra virgin olive oil
2 Tbsppine nuts
2 clovegarlic, crushed
1 tspsalt ,optionall
1 1/3 cparmesan cheese,fresly grated
1/3 cromano cheese, grated
2 Tbspbutter,softened to room temperature
EQUIPMET- FOOD PROCESSOR OR BLENDER,OR A MORTAR AND PESTLE
How to Make Pesto
- Place the basil leaves, pine nuts, olive oil,garlic and salt in food processor or blender,and process at high speed for about 45 seconds.Scrape down the sides from time to time
- The mixture at the point should be thin enough to run off the spatula easily. If it appears too thick,blend in additional olive oil.
- Pour the sauce into a bowl and stir in the grated cheeses and butter.While the cheeses can be added to the mixture in the machine,the texture will be too fine for an authetic pesto
- Mortar and Pestle Method:
The ingredients are added in this order:basil leaves,nuts,garlic,salt,cheeses,olive oil and butter.
Place the basil,nuts,garlic,and salt ina large portar.Use a rotary motion to grind and crush .When the mixture becomes a paste,add the grated cheeses and continue to grind with the pestle until a perfect blend is achieved
- Begine to add the olive oil,a few drop at a time.Beat it into the mixture witha wooden spoon.When all the oil has been added,beat in the butter.
- Uses- Spoon 1 or 2 tablespoon of a hot soup into the pesto before serving.One table spon of pesto swirled on top of a soup in the tureen,with additional pesto to be passed,is a Genoese tradition.