Saturday, July 2, 2011

Homemade Pesto

The basil in our garden is ridiculously overgrown and we're loving it. We're having a hard time keeping up with the growth because we've been in and out of town so much. Patrick got home from a Jr. High trip on Wednesday afternoon and he's already left again for a mission trip to St. Louis. I knew that I wanted to try making some pesto so here's a little about my adventure.


Ingredients:

- 1/4 cup walnuts
- 1/4 cup pine nuts
- 3 tablespoons chopped garlic (about 9 cloves)
- 5 cups of fresh basil leaves, washed and dried
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 1/2 cups of good quality olive oil
- 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese


Directions:

- Place walnuts, pine nuts, and garlic in food processor and process for 30 seconds.
- Add the basil, salt, pepper and begin to process again.
- With the processor running, slowly pour the olive oil into the bowl through the feed tube
- Process until thoroughly pureed.
- Add the cheese and puree for a minute.
- Serve or store the pesto in the refrigerator or freezer with a thin film of oil on top.


It was delicious. Yes, we had to try it immediately. I think it is better if you let it sit in the refrigerator for a day but we were ready to try it out. So while I made hors d'oeuvres, Patrick set to work on utilizing another herb found in our garden.... Mint!


Mojitos made fresh from the garden. Here's that recipe...

- Muddle 12 fresh mint leaves and 1/2 a lime
- Cover with 2 tablespoons (1oz) of simple syrup
- Add 1 1/2 oz of any rum you choose (Patrick is strange and puts tequila in his so I suppose you could even go that route)
- Stir well and garnish with lime wedge
(Serving size is 1 glass)


Complete with Auburn tumbler! You can see my handiwork in the background and I'm not talking about the fruit. I used what we had- campari tomatoes, leftover parmesan from the pesto, and the fresh pesto that I had just completed. It was all quite tasty.

It was good to spend a couple of days hanging out with Patrick. We've learned to enjoy every minute of him being home during the summer months.


Patrick brought these home after spending time with one of his students yesterday. I used to get upset about flowers because I felt that it was a waste of money, but I've warmed up to the idea. It is such a simple way for him to show me that he loves me and thinks about me when he's gone. They look good on that refinished table don't they? :)

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