• 3 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 4 oz fresh basil, stems removed, washed and dried
  • 3 oz olive oil
  • 1/4 c toasted pine nuts
  • 1/2 c Parmesan cheese or to taste

Put the garlic and salt in a food processor and pulse to mince. Add the basil leaves and oil and pulse to chop, stopping once or twice to scrape down the sides.  The pine nuts and cheese can be added at this point or added when using the pesto.

Put in small containers to use or store.  Film the tops with more olive oil to reduce browning and oxidation.


The classic recipe combines the nuts and cheese into the sauce but for dishes like hot pasta, I find it is better to sprinkle it on top, after the sauce has been combined with the pasta and a little cooking water. Just toasted and lightly chopped pine nuts can be used as a garnish.

For a salad dressing, especially for tomatoes, add a little balsamic vinegar.

I love this on lightly steamed summer squash and zucchini.

Pour over or mix with cream cheese for an appetizer spread.

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