I made pesto for the first time! It’s not difficult at all; the biggest hurdle is ensuring you have the necessary ingredients on hand: a ton of basil, a hunk of good Parmesan cheese, walnuts, and olive oil. I always have olive oil in my cabinet, but the other ingredients, not so much.
I decided to make the pesto before I left for vacation because I didn’t want to risk the death of my large, healthy basil plant while I was away. I mean, look at this beast! It was just calling to be made into pesto.
I picked off everything I could. Only the leaves spotted with brown dots remained.
After the leaves were removed from the plant, I rinsed them in a colander and spread them on clean towels to dry.
I pulled out my food processor (it tends to make an appearance several times a year) and used this recipe to make sure I had the correct ratio of ingredients. I ended up having enough basil (8 packed cups) to make two batches.
Garlic, basil, Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper, walnuts, olive oil — in that order. I ended up using only a half cup of olive oil per batch instead of a full cup like the recipe called for. The consistency looked fine to me and I’d rather have not enough olive oil to start out with than too much. I can always add more later.
Since I was about to leave home for nine days, I scooped the finished pesto into ice cube trays, wrapped them in plastic wrap, and stuck them in the freezer. When I returned home yesterday, I popped them out and put the pesto cubes in a zip-top bag.
I did taste the pesto before freezing it. Delicious! I can’t wait to try it on some salmon.