If you're surprised to learn that pesto can be made from any green herb, you're not alone. The word itself means to pound or crush, in Italian. The classic Genovese recipe uses basil, coarse salt, olive oil and pine nuts as well as grated parmigiano or pecorino cheese. But you can substitute basil with parsley (recipe below) or cilantro. Try also combining parsley, tarragon and mint. Or parsley and sage - yum! The pine nuts can be swapped with walnuts, pecans or almonds. In fact, I often make pesto without nuts at all. I can't say if I can notice the difference at all.
Why not experiment - that's half the fun. And unlike store bought pesto, not a drop of milk in sight!
I was given so much parsley from my Mum's garden, I decided to make pesto using the following recipe:
Salt n Oil
Basically chop everything up, put into pestle or food processor and mash up.
Add oil as you continue to mash. Store in fridge for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.
Makes about 500g which was enough to serve us a simple but delicious pasta dinner for 5.
Actual ingredients below.
1 cup shelled walnuts, about 100g 2 cups chopped parsley, about 1 bunch 1/2 cup grated pecorino or parmesan cheese garlic clove, roughly chopped (I used half a garlic clove which was plenty) 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
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