We have had the warmest and sunniest Spring and Summer that I can ever remember! It has been a true gift, since I don’t have very many nice things to say about the Pacific Northwest during the rainy season (every month of the year except August). Do you know which plant really, really, really loves hot and dry weather?
Sometimes I plant my basil in May or June and it literally rots right in the ground. It’s usually just too wet around here. Since we had such a beautiful Spring, I decided to trust my luck and plant early again. This time it paid off!
I have more basil than I know what to do with! Ok, I’m actually having no problem using it… but you know what I mean. Well, what do you do when your garden is overflowing with basil?
Make pesto, of course!
Last time I shared this recipe, it wasn’t actually a recipe. I threw in a little of this and a little of that and chopped it all up in the food processor until it was ready. This time I measured everything for you! So, here’s what I did.
I put the following ingredients into the food processor:
2 cups packed basil
4 small cloves of garlic
3/4 cup of pine nuts
3/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
3/4 teaspoon natural sea salt
After a few second in the food processor, it’s all done!
The first night I served this over this spaghetti noodles, as a side dish. The second night I made my favorite, EASY, pesto appetizer.
Making this appetizer is SUPER easy. I mixed a little pesto with a block of cream cheese and spread it on a platter. Then I topped it with more pesto and some chopped sundried tomatoes, and served it with crackers. Sometimes I buy the bottle of sundried tomatoes that are packed in oil and other times I buy the package that is packed dry. The oil packed tomatoes are a bit harder to work with and chop, but my kids seem to like these better. I think the dry tomatoes look prettier because it doesn’t get oil all over your appetizer. Either way, it’s very yummy.
One last tip about making pesto:
Pine nuts are very expensive and that doesn’t make me happy. There is really no cheap substitute for pine nuts, so if you are making pesto, you just have to buy them. That’s the reason pesto is so expensive to purchase in the grocery store. I just discovered that Costco sells pine nuts! I bought a big package for $20. The package holds 4 3/4 cups of nuts, which is a steal compared to the $7 you will pay at the grocery store for a tiny little container. I know I will be making pesto all Summer long, so it was worth it for me!
Pesto is so fresh and yummy! I just love it! Once my daughter got over the muddy green color, she fell in love. My son loves any type of food you put in front of him, so it wasn’t a hard sell for him. Me? I love anything I can grow in my own garden, pick, and turn into dinner. I can’t imagine anything better!