What craziness are we suggesting? Pesto made by your own fair hand? Have we gone mad? Why not just buy it, when it’s so delicious straight from the jar?
Friends, I know it might seem like I’ve gone all folksy, knocking up homemade pesto in between childcare and skipping to work. But really, it’s easy. Two minutes in a blender/food processor and ta da! You have something so much more delicious than what you would buy from the shop.
And by making it yourself, giving your kids pesto and pasta on a regular basis isn’t a shortcut to bad parenting. Instead you are administering green vegetables to your children. Congratulations!
I’ve written about pesto before, but Lucy and I had to make it for a Google presentation we did last week, and I was reminded of its gloriousness. People were literally eating it from a spoon, coming back for seconds, thirds and then bringing their friends.
Here’s the recipe. I’ve kept it vague so you can taste and add more or less of what you fancy. Also, it’s not just about basil, parmesan and pine nuts. Use whatever leaves you have in the fridge (pesto is a great way of preserving leaves which are about to go off). Rocket and pecorino, spinach and stilton, I made parsley, goats cheese and walnut recently, which went down well. Sometimes I even use Cheddar. I know. Don’t tell the Italians.
bunch of leaves/herbs – about 30g
40g nuts – lightly toasted
40g cheese, grated
half a clove of garlic, crushed
75 ml virgin olive oil
Pinch of salt
Grind of pepper
Optional squeeze of lemon
Place the herbs, grated cheese, crushed garlic and the nuts (cooled, after their toasting) in a food processor. I use the food processor attachment of my handheld blender. Whizz up, season and add the oil. Taste. Add more of what you fancy, and maybe a squirt of lemon juice or some lemon zest.