Everyone has their own recipe for - of method of making - that summer standby, fresh pesto. We wouldn't bother listing suggested uses; a comprehensive list of dishes incorporating pesto could crash this server. Can't resist however just sharing two current, heavy-rotation applications at Cafe Drake: slathered on thick slices of ripe tomato and flash broiled and tossed with linguini and sauteed shards of zucchini and fresh fava beans.
To the subject at hand . . . the recipe below is the one we've determined is mistake-proof. All you need to do is adjust salt and black pepper to your personal preferences.
Place in a food processor or Magic Bullet: 2 cups tightly packed basil leaves, 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil, 1/3 cup pine nuts, 3 cloves of garlic (minced) and a generous pinch of kosher salt. Process until relatively smooth then transfer to a bowl and stir in gently freshly ground black pepper and 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese. The better the cheese, the better the pesto but use whatever is the best within your budget; no need to go overboard with a sauce already packed with other strong flavors.
Walnuts make a perfectly acceptable substitute for the pine nuts and you won't do too much damage switching out Romano(or a very dry, aged Asiago cheese) for the Parmesan.
|Summer 2012 Batch 1 of Cafe Drake Pesto|