I have never made pesto before because most include pine nuts which are a big no-no for people who have peanut allergies. So I've always stayed away from pesto ... until today! After finding this gem of a recipe I decided to omit the pine nuts and carry on with the recipe as is. Glad I did. My kitchen smells amazing right now and it took all of my will power not to keep 'sampling' the pesto! Needless to say I'm so excited to eat it over some fresh pasta for dinner!
I was also amazed at how easy it was to make. Seriously, if you have a salad spinner and a food processor you're good to go for making pesto! Below is a picture of the basil, sun-dried tomatoes and garlic ready to go for a spin!
Here's a picture of the resulting pesto. Disclaimer: the pesto smells and tastes much better than it looks.
1/2 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained and chopped
3 cups fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup olive oil, divided
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Remove stems from basil and rinse well. Using a salad spinner, remove as much moisture from the basil as possible.
In a food processor, process sun-dried tomatoes, basil and garlic - pulsing the motor until the mixture is coarsely chopped. Add Parmesan cheese and 1/4 cup of olive oil; process for 10 seconds. With the motor running, add the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil, salt and pepper. Scrape down sides of the processor bowl and process the mixture until it is well combined.
Serve over hot pasta sprinkled with extra fresh Parmesan cheese or spread on toasted french bread and serve as an appetizer.
Update (evening of Sept 22/10): So I did my very best and didn't inhale the pesto this afternoon even though I honestly think it was calling my name (*pat on back*). For dinner I fed the kids something easy (they didn't want to partake in my wonderful pesto and, quite frankly, I didn't want to share) and made myself some fusilli to go with my pesto. Well let me tell you -- it .... was .... awesome! I think I had a foodgasm ... twice. De-lish! Now I'm trying to figure out other ways to eat my pesto. Guess what I'll be making more of tomorrow so I can freeze it? I think I have a problem.