So back when Jeff and I were first dating, we went out to eat or got take out a lot. I love to cook, but you know how fun it is to be out and about in a new relationship, and our schedules were busy.
I remember one of the first times I cooked for him I made a pesto, which he liked. He isn’t quite as adventurous with food as I am, but he’s willing to try things. A few weeks later we were out and I mentioned to whoever we were with that I had made pesto, and he did not believe that I had done so from scratch and hadn’t bought the sauce pre-made! Little does he know just how easy it is to make! But I’m okay with him thinking that…
We now eat pesto quite often. Usually over pasta or risotto, and I love it over salmon. I would imagine it would be great on chicken as well, but if you know me then you know I do not eat birds!
Anyway, here’s a quick easy recipe, with a few variations…I don’t really measure when I cook so everything is an approximation…use more or less depending on your preference to consistency and taste!
In a small food processor…combine the following:
1-2 cups fresh basil
1/2 cups pine nuts or walnuts (Jeff doesn’t do walnuts!)
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup parmesean cheese
1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes (I usually cut them into 1/2″ pieces with kitchen shears)
3-5 cloves garlic (or about 1/2 TBSP garlic powder)
Lemon juice to taste (I love it so I squeeze a whole lemon in there!)
Sea salt and black pepper to taste
Chop in food processor until all ingredients are combined into to smooth paste. If too thick, add more oil.
Personally, although I like the taste of sun-dried tomatoes, I like them pureed in. Jeff prefers them to be just small pieces mixed in after everything else is combined. And if you don’t care for them, the pesto is great without them too.
Sometimes I will make it at the beginning of the week and store it in the fridge to add to dishes like pasta, fish, grilled cheese or even eggs. However, usually I use it right away. My personal favorite is with Salmon…just lay the filets on a foil covered baking dish and cover with the pesto, pop in the oven for 20 minutes at 350. So good!