“This easy, beautiful pesto recipe is absolutely bursting with fresh herby flavour. ”
- ½ a clove garlic
- 1 big bunch of fresh basil
- 1 handful of pine nuts
- 1 good handful of freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- extra virgin olive oil
- 1 lemon , optional
- Peel the garlic, then pound in a pestle and mortar with a pinch of sea salt.
- Pick, roughly chop and add the basil leaves, then bash to a paste (or pulse in a food processor).
- Add the pine nuts (very lightly toast first, if you like) to the mixture and pound again, then stir in half the Parmesan.
- Drizzle in some oil – you need just enough to bind the sauce and get it to an oozy consistency.
- Add most of the remaining cheese, then season to perfection with salt and black pepper. Have a taste, and keep adding a bit more cheese or oil until you are happy with the taste and consistency.
- Add a squeeze of lemon juice at the end to give it a little twang, if you like, but it’s not essential.
You may think it’s nice to toast the pine nuts until they’re golden, to give them a nutty taste, but the really good pestos I’ve tasted in Italy just have them very lightly toasted, to give a creaminess rather than a nuttiness.
Source: Jamie Oliver