Friday, July 25, 2008


I decided I should make another batch of pesto before I get peaches and before the tomatoes start pouring in. Last year, I had to make swiss chard pesto (pretty good, but not as good as the basil variety) because the few basil plants I had flopped. This past winter, I told Jamey, "I want a whole row of basil in the garden." He obliged (thank you, honey) and as you can see below, I have lots of basil. I also have about 8 plants by my back door in a flower bed. To the right of the basil are our green beans and to the left, sweet potatoes.

I use the pesto recipe from the Simply in Season cookbook. Except, I add more salt, less olive oil and replace the pine nuts (I never have them and they are really expensive) with whatever nuts I have on hand. Today it was a combination of English walnuts from my grandmother and store bought pecans and almonds. Here are my three batches- each batch is the recipe times five. I had over half of a bushel of basil, ok?

I freeze most of the pesto in ice cube trays and pop them out into ziploc bags when they are frozen. The rest I freeze in small containers. If you are curious, this batch made the three ice cube trays, plus 7 more cups.

Pesto pizza is on the menu for tonight: wholewheat crust brushed with pesto and topped with fresh sliced tomatoes and mozzarella cheese.

If you live close to me and would like some basil, please call me. I barely made a dent in my row.

Pesto (Adapted from Simply in Season)

This recipe yields about 1 cup of pesto.

1 cup packed fresh basil leaves
3 cloves garlic
1/4 cup nuts (whatever you have on hand: pine nuts, pecans, walnuts, almonds, etc. or a combination)
3-6 tbsp. parmesan cheese
1 tsp. salt
1/4-1/3 cup olive oil

Combine all ingredients in a food processor, processing small batches if needed. Adjust amount of olive oil as needed to obtain the consistency you prefer. Freeze in ice cube trays (described above) to preserve.
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  1. Oh my lands! You are so amazing! And impressive! What beautiful plants! What QUANTITY!

    Yes, I might like some basil. Will it be around for awhile? I need to round up the other ingredients and carve some space out of a day before I run over.

    Wow. I'm still shaking my head...

  2. This is amazing!! I made it the other day and was so surprised at how easy and delicious it was. I now have a freezer bag full of little ice cube shaped pesto servings. Thank you!!!

  3. I just harvested some of my basil and plan to whip up a batch of this first thing tomorrow morning! Thanks for the recipe.


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