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Have you ever tried making your own pesto?

It's absurdly simple – I had never realised.

Get a load of basil – and I mean loads of it. It helps if you chop it up because otherwise they don't whizz up so easily.
Several cloves of fresh garlic
a lot of Parmesan

pine nut kernels


oil. Most recipes say it should be olive oil – but that can get very expensive when you are making the stuff in large quantities. Sunflower oil works very well if you do a 50-50 split with olive oil – you'll never know the difference.

 

Toast the pine nuts gently until they get slightly browned – and that gives them a much nuttier flavour. I do it by laying them out in a large frying pan so I can keep an eye on them and juggle them around a lot.

 Put all of the ingredients in the whizzer – except for the oil.

Start whizzing. Drip the olive oil in bit by bit until there is sufficient oil that the blades in the whizzer will be able to bite on to the rest of the ingredients and grind it into paste. You hang onto the sunflower oil for the big trick later.

When it's all good paste, scoop it out into some kind of bowl.

Of course you will then find that at the bottom of your whizzer and caught under the blades et cetera there will be bits of the pesto paste which are trapped and inaccessible and you may have to simply wash them away when you wash out the whizzing bowl.
But now comes the trick.
Take the rest of the oil that you are going to use and put that into the whizzer. The sunflower oil is thinner than the olive oil and this is why you've kept this back. Whizz up the oil and you will have a fairly liquidy substance which has mainly rinsed all the rest of the delicious trapped pesto paste and which can now be easily poured out into the bowl on top of the rest of the pesto.
Mix it all up with a spoon.

 

I've been making loads of it and I keep it in a sealed preserving jar in the fridge and take some out when I need it.

 

Even if the Italians beat us tonight at football, you will still have to love them for Pesto.

 

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And now for some more pesto fun:

Do you know that you can make pesto out of nearly anything.

Coriander pesto… mmmmmm.... yummy.

Oregano pesto ... aaarrrgghhh...

Artichoke pesto ....  corrrrrrrrrrrr....

 

 

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Do you just put pesto on your pasta?

Maybe you are limiting yourself.

How about morning toast spread with a thin layer of pesto?

Have you tried buying a very basic pizza and then adding your own toppings including spreading bits of pesto – different flavours over it? OMG!!!
What about crumpets in the morning – toasted with a layer of coriander pesto and then a layer on top of Marmite!!!  With a cup of PG tips – Orgasmic! I'm sure this is how catholic nuns and priests manage to stay celibate (most of the time).

I think I need to sit down and take control of myself.

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And by the way, if artichoke hearts are outside of your budget, then you could try Jerusalem artichokes. I haven't tried them in pesto yet but I expect that they are just as good as globe artichokes.
Of course you have to cook them first. I can imagine that roasted, peeled and then whizzed up as part of the pesto sauce would be really good.
Maybe someone can let us know

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Parsley pesto - although the flavour might overpower the pine nuts.  Maybe try walnuts or cashew and extra garlic

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New area for the bear garden ?   Cooking corner

 

Sure someone can come up with a catchy title.

 

 

 

 

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Garlic bread – except made with pesto rather than parsley/garlic/butter.

In fact one could even do a "Surprise Garlic Bread". Take the baguette – part sliced into chunks so that it's bendy like a caterpillar and then use a different flavoured pesto for different parts.

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43 minutes ago, unclebulgaria67 said:

New area for the bear garden ?   Cooking corner

 

Sure someone can come up with a catchy title.

 

Good idea about a new title – but it would be nicer for it to stay in the "community" area

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Did you know that apparently if pasta is cooked and then allowed to cool down – eaten cold it is less fattening then when it has just been cooked.

Not only that, if you then reheat the pasta, it is still less fattening then when it is cooked the first time! Same with rice apparently.

Anyway, boil up your pasta and then when it is al dente cool it down quickly with cold water so that it immediately stops softening and doesn't get mushy and stick together too much. Then mix in a load of pesto – any flavour – and serve it cold as part of a salad.

You can prepare it well in advance – even the day before and keep it in the fridge in a bowl covered with film.  Let it de-chill before serving so that the oil loosens up a bit.

I suppose you could do different coloured pastas – white, green, red each with a different pesto.

People will think you're really flashy and they will talk about you respectfully.

 


What's not to like?

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I've tried cooking different coloured pastas and not been very successful. It looks beautiful in the packet and as soon as you cook it, it goes all pastel.

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Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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Here's a BBC recipe using pesto and olive oil for the dressing. I like pesto mixed in with vinaigrette as well.

 

You can also stir pesto into risotto at the end of the cooking time to add the basil and parmesan flavour.

 

WWW.BBCGOODFOOD.COM

Whip up a tasty potato and tuna salad in less than half an hour

 

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Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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Red pepper pesto

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call it " Hey Pesto" ,  or Consumer cookery   class, ,  

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R.I.P my beautiful grey ghost, gone but never forgotten, taken so suddenly, 04/07/2004 ~ ~ 02/03/2017

Gone but never forgotten,Little Miss Sunshine, Alisha Marie. 15/12/2005 ~ ~ 13/02/2006

Our  beloved Dalmatian Jazz,  gone to join Wal at Rainbow Bridge, hope you are now pain free .  20/9/2005 ~ ~ 24/3/2019

 

 

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The Cookery Cauldron,  Hidden Gems, Cookery Class

R.I.P my beautiful grey ghost, gone but never forgotten, taken so suddenly, 04/07/2004 ~ ~ 02/03/2017

Gone but never forgotten,Little Miss Sunshine, Alisha Marie. 15/12/2005 ~ ~ 13/02/2006

Our  beloved Dalmatian Jazz,  gone to join Wal at Rainbow Bridge, hope you are now pain free .  20/9/2005 ~ ~ 24/3/2019

 

 

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