Friday, August 24, 2007

Market Fresh Pesto

When it comes to figuring out what's in season, the grocery store is almost useless. The only place to go, in my opinion, is the local farmer's market. Everything is fresh, local and in season. Seeing as we're coming around to tomato and fruit season, it came as a beautiful surprise to find a generous bunch of fresh basil.

The only obvious thing for me to do with basil is good old fashioned Italian pesto. Though I have an excellent Italian cookbook in my library, I figured I'd just grab the ingredients and wing it. After all, how hard can it be to make pesto.

As is not always the case with my impromptu cooking, my pesto turned out great. In contrast to the overly salty versions you find at the grocery store, my pesto was smooth and creamy. I filled my food processor with about 8 cups of loose basil leaves, topped with 3/4 of a bulb of garlic, a bag of pine nuts equal to about 3/4 cups, 1/2 cup of parmesan cheese and started the machine. All I did then was pour olive oil into the spinning mixture till it formed a nice sauce...not too oily and not too light.

Though I'm sure there are other ways to serve pesto (if you know any please comment on this post) I like my pesto with pasta and nothing more. My girlfriend added some shrimp one night and that gave it a nice added touch. Either way you serve it, pesto is just great. The perfect recipe to highlight the fruits of the market and the hard work of local farmers.

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