Lemon Basil Pesto

I love this pesto on hot toast with sliced tomato and loads of freshly cracked pepper, and I plan on using it with some freshly made pasta in the near future too. Its a wonderful addition to a cheese, crackers and wine evening and it is such a good way to use your basil if it suddenly grows like crazy!

We had a single lemon basil plant that I picked up at the local markets quite some time ago. It just plodded along, not growing overly well, but not dying either so we let it stay. Then when it go so hot over summer the poor thing just gave up, went to seed and died. 6 weeks later and with the help of a heap of rain we suddenly have a garden bed full of young basil plants. When you have about a square meter of basil to work with pesto seems like the logical choice. Having said that we still have about 1/2 a square meter left after today’s cull! I will have to think about what to make next 🙂

Prep time – 15mins, Cooking time – 5mins, Makes about 500ml

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Saki modelling for scale, the basil can be seen behind her!

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Lemon Basil Pesto

4 packed cups lemon basil (regular basil is fine too!)

1 ½ cups grated parmesan

1 ¾ cups extra virgin olive oil

1 cup pine nuts, roasted

6 cloves garlic

Salt and Pepper to taste

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees C, line a baking tray with foil or baking paper.
  2. Place pine nuts evenly over the tray and roast for 3-5 mins or until golden brown.
  3. Once pine nuts have been roasted, place all ingredients into a food processor and blend for around a minute.
  4. Remove pesto from processor and place in your favourite jar, and enjoy!

~A

P.S. Props to Sweet Phi Blog for the inspiration behind this recipe, I altered her ratios just a wee bit to make the pesto more to my tastes – that’s the great thing about cooking, you do you!

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