Early Spring Sunrise Snow on the Silo

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Time to make the pesto!

The basil is doing VERY well so far this year, it is loving the wet and warm weather. I took me years to realize this, but I cannot stress enough, PICK AND USE YOUR BASIL! You will be rewarded with more and more and more basil. I used to hate the idea of cutting off my pretty plants, but once they show signs of flowering, give them a good trim and and you will be amazed at how quickly they rebound. On the other hand, if you don't harvest the plants flower and become leggy and woody with reduced production.

So I picked this HUGE colander full of leaves from my many plants.

I removed the leaves from the stems and put them in the blender with a good amount of extra virgin olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper and a splash of balsamic vinegar. Pine nuts are a traditional ingredient, but I'm not fond of them so I leave them out. Then I puree, adding more EVOO until I get a nice thick milkshake consistency. I like to freeze mine in old fashioned pyrex glass containers with plastic lids or half pint mason jars. Delicious on pasta, warm or cold, and I use it as a 'rub' on pork roasts. Very versatile and tasty stuff!

Made a chiffonade with the rest of the leaves and added them to fresh pasta sauce for dinner. You can also dry bunches then store the dried leaves in an airtight container away from direct light and heat where they keep their potency about six months.

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