Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Oh, Summer!

Oh, Summer! I love you in so many ways:
Fresh fruit, vegetables and herbs, the warm nights, wearing sandals, fresh cut flowers on my table, a break from school...

Yesterday, I did something that I've always said I wanted to do, but never did- make pesto and freeze it. Actually, have I even made pesto before?? Maybe once. We have a little patch of basil growing in the garden and something needed to be done with it. My husband asked if he should bring it to the farmer's market. I replied, "No! I want to make pesto!" After making a double batch of pesto, we still have a whole bunch of basil. I guess I need to make more pesto. (I need to apologize to any of our market customers reading about my basil hoarding problem. It's not you, it's me. I mean, we can't sell everything. Please don't hate me.)


This recipe for pesto comes from The Classic Zucchini Cookbook. This book is great and boasts that it has "225 Recipes for All Kinds of Squash." You won't be bored with squash ever again.

Every pesto recipe is slightly different. I made basil pesto, but you can use other herbs also. I looked at just three different cookbooks and all had the same ingredients, but different amounts of them. If you are like me and need exact measurements, follow the recipe below. If you don't like something about it, next time tweak it a little bit. If you don't need a set recipe, this can be a guide for you. I doubled the recipe because like I said, we have a lot of basil.

Pesto

1 1/2 c. fresh basil leaves, tightly packed
2 cloves of garlic
3 T. pine nuts, toasted (you may also use walnuts)
1/4 c. olive oil
3 T. Parmesan cheese
Salt and fresh cracked pepper

1. Combine the basil, garlic, and pine nuts in a food processor. (I used a blender.) Process until finely chopped. With the motor running, slowly pour the oil, until it all comes together. Add the Parmesan and salt and pepper; pulse to combine.

 
2. Use right away or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week or in the freezer for up to 4 months.
   NOTE: To preserve the light green color of the pesto once you have transferred it to a storage container, cover the pesto with a film of olive oil to seal out the air.
Makes about 2/3 cup.

For dinner tonight, I made fresh fettuccini, sautéed some yellow zucchini and tossed it all with the pesto.  It was fantastic.


This Winter, when I use the rest of the pesto, the aroma of basil and garlic will for sure take me back to this day. Thank you, Summer for being so delicious. <3