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Classic Pesto

I know you guys are probably sick of me posting recipes of vegetables that are uncooked.


I also know that I just posted a recipe for this garlic scape pesto a few weeks ago, so it’s hardly necessary to have another pesto recipe on here, but I do have my reasons.

  1. I had a bunch of basil in the fridge from last week’s CSA box;
  2. I needed pesto to make an amazing and easy summer minestrone soup (that I will be posting soon!); and
  3. The last time I posted a basic pesto recipe was in 2010 and for some reason (new to blogging, obviously), I decided not to post any pretty pictures of it all finished and instead included a close-up photo of a giant green caterpillar (which kind of made it look like I intended it to be an ingredient?).  I know.  I feel nauseous just thinking about it now.  You can see it here if you want to have a little chuckle at my early attempts at blogging, but, warning!–giant caterpillar.
Emerson finds this just as alarming as you do.

Emerson finds this just as alarming as you do.

So I just want to reassure you that I do have some other food groups coming up in recipes.  There’s the summer minestrone soup (seriously delicious), and I’ll be baking a tres leche cake for my dad tonight to celebrate his birthday (guess I just ruined the surprise) this weekend.  I also have a post coming up about some free classes at the library!  Exciting!

And I can promise that there were no caterpillars photographed–or used–in the making of this pesto.

Classic Pesto 1

Classic Pesto (makes a pint)

  • 1 C toasted walnuts
  • 2 handfuls basil
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/2-3/4 t salt (I like my pesto on the salty side)
  • 1 C loosely packed freshly ground pecorino-romano cheese
  • 1/4 C olive oil
  • 1/8 C water

Combine all ingredients in a blender or food processor, and blend until evenly chopped and smooth.


(If you buy walnuts untoasted, just place them in a dry skillet over medium heat for 2-4 minutes, shaking them frequently to prevent burning).

I used our Ninja blender, and it worked perfectly.  I really love that thing.

Classic Pesto 3

You can substitute the nuts for more traditional pine nuts, or sunflower seeds.  I like walnuts because they have a great nutty flavor and are soft enough that they blend easily (unlike almonds).

Classic Pesto 3We ate the pesto last night as the main seasoning in the minestrone soup, and tonight I’ll probably make some basic pasta with broccoli and pesto to clean out the fridge and pantry a bit.

The 37th annual Park Ave Summer Art Festival is gearing up for the weekend–people are setting up tents, music stages, road blocks, and food booths.  We’ve also got a nice pair of port-a-potties located right across the street from my apartment building, so that’s nice.  My baby sister is also getting her first tattoo tomorrow, which is really making me itch to get going on adding to my (only) tattoo.  I have some big plans for it, so hopefully seeing her get it done will motivate me to finally get started on mine!  I’ll share pictures next week!

Also, it just went from sunny and beautiful to POURING and thundering in about four minutes.  I love summer!  And I should probably check my windows…

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