Saturday, September 1, 2007

Favorite Pesto Sauce with Basil and Almonds

It's late summer here, and basil is abundant....It's a shame when it goes to waste, so the best way to store basil is in a high quality pesto sauce. I love this pesto for it's flavor and texture. It isn't too liquidy, and it spreads easily on sandwiches. I was surprised when I realized that the recipe didn't call for Parmesan, but I now realize that pesto absolutely doesn't need it! This recipe comes from The Modern Vegetarian Kitchen, by Peter Berley. To be honest, I have had much luck with this cookbook, but this one recipe is a gem and is good reason to buy it! The pesto is versatile, and may be used as a sandwich spread, cracker spread, dip, pasta sauce, dressing for name it. Whatever you have that needs to pack a little more protein can use pesto. Ok, so here's the recipe:

Basil-Almond Pesto
Makes 2 cups

1 1/2 cups whole almonds, peeled and lightly toasted (I used slivered and toasted almonds)
2 cups packed fresh basil leaves
2 garlic cloves, peeled and left whole
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Coarse sea salt (a favorite of Peter Berley's)

In the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade, grind the almonds to a meal. Add the basil, garlic, lemon juice, and lemon zest and puree (don't worry if it doesn't puree completely at this point; it will have a change after you add the olive oil). Slowly add the oil and process until smooth. Blend in 1 teaspoon salt and adjust seasoning to taste. Serve at once. Cover and leftover pesto with a film of olive oil in a tightly sealed container and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This looks good. I will make it tonight. I too am a musician who loves to cook, but have 3 cats, not herda

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