Classic Basil Pesto

Classic Basil Pesto

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  • 2 to 3 large cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts or walnuts
  • 2 cups basil leaves
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan or Pecorino Romano cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt


If you choose to prepare this recipe in the most classic manner you will need a mortar and pestle. Working in small batches, add half the garlic to the mortar and crush it well with the pestle. Then add half the pine nuts. Tear 1 cup basil into small pieces and add to the mixture. Add enough oil to crush everything into a paste and then fold in half of the cheese and salt. Repeat with the remaining ingredients.

Here is a much simpler (albeit not nearly so satisfying) method: Place all of the ingredients in the bowl of a food processor or blender and blend until smooth.

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