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Fresh Pesto

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Topic by justjoel posted 10-13-2011 10:38 AM 923 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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justjoel

1062 posts in 1988 days
hardiness zone 7a

10-13-2011 10:38 AM

Topic tags/keywords: pesto basil garlic chicken harvesting

A few of you have asked for this recipe, but when you did I didn’t really have one of my own, I just used one off the internet as a guide. I kinda have it down now, now that I’ve made about 10 batches this summer, and it’s been a hit everywhere I’ve taken it.

I made three batches tonight and put them in the freezer as they’re needed for a big party in 10 days ( http://www.aquariussalonspareno.com/charity.html ), and yes, if you click on the link you might recognize a couple of people in the posted photos. My wife and a friend of ours are doing the catering (the company is called, “Two Chicks Named Irene,” or as I like to call them, Sandy and La Ronda), and they asked me for some for the event. (Yes, she’s catering her own benefit. ???)

I use Romano instead of Parmesan, as it has a stronger flavor. I also use pecans instead of expensive pine nuts or sometimes bitter walnuts (the traditional substitute for pine nuts). Other than those two changes, I’ve really only increased the amount of nuts and Romano a bit, and the garlic I doubled from what my base recipe called for. You’ll need a food processor.

+++++++++++++++++++++++
2 packed cups of fresh basil leaves,
1/2 cup freshly grated Romano cheese
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup chopped pecans
6 medium sized garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper

Combine the basil and chopped pecans and pulse a few times in a food processor. Add the garlic, pulse a few more times. Slowly add the olive oil in a constant stream while the food processor is on. Scrape down the sides with a spatula, and pulse until close to the consistancy you’re looking for (make it as coarse or as smooth as you like). Add the salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste and pulse a bit more, then add the grated cheese and pulse again until blended. Makes 1 1/2 cups.
+++++++++++++++++++++++

For parties or snacking, I generally just serve it with plain cream cheese and crackers, and found that I like rice crackers best; but good, unseasoned multi-grain crackers are fantastic too. Pictured is a large, boneless chicken breast with sliced mushrooms and fresh Roma tomatoes, topped with the pesto. I baked it at 350 for about 20-25 minutes. It was simple and fantastic, but I’d recommend more tomatoes and that you spread the pesto out before sealing the foil (or however you choose to cook it) as it didn’t “melt” into everything as I expected it to.

-- "We are stardust. We are golden. And we've got to get ourselves back to the garden." Joni Mitchell



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MsDebbieP

14682 posts in 2608 days
hardiness zone 5b

10-13-2011 12:16 PM

the pesto freezes well, does it?

that sure does look delicious

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

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justjoel

1062 posts in 1988 days
hardiness zone 7a

10-13-2011 05:19 PM

My mother used to freeze it with no apparent ill effects, but I’ve read differing opinions. It is the cheese, supposedly, that doesn’t freeze well, but then again mom used to grate a batch of parmesan and freeze it and didn’t seem to have problems.

-- "We are stardust. We are golden. And we've got to get ourselves back to the garden." Joni Mitchell

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MsDebbieP

14682 posts in 2608 days
hardiness zone 5b

10-14-2011 09:32 PM

I always cut cheese into 1 c. sections and freeze it… when it has melted “just right” it is a perfect crumble for on top of things

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

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justjoel

1062 posts in 1988 days
hardiness zone 7a

10-15-2011 06:33 AM

Seems like low-moisture cheeses like Romano and parmesan should be fine frozen, for a while, at least – not sure I’d freeze brie or the like.

-- "We are stardust. We are golden. And we've got to get ourselves back to the garden." Joni Mitchell

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