Pistachio Pesto

May 22, 2024

Major lover of pesto here. Long ago (over 30 year ago) we bought a huge flat of basil at the Pike Place Market and made a big batch of it and then TPS took over making it plus we sell a spectacular variety at WK. So have not made it myself for ages until yesterday. We bought a little assembled herb garden/bucket the other day at a favorite roadside farm stand. In the past we have given these as host/hostess gifts as they are so plentiful, useful and quite fetching looking. But this one we would keep! Basil was spilling out of it so knew it was the first thing I wanted to use. Plus we had all the ingredients to make pesto, so I was taking that as a sign. Pistachio pesto it would be. Just about any nut will do. But I like the sweetness of the pistachio and, of course, the green hue makes me like it even more. We are hosting a few suppers in the coming days, so will use it up then.

This is really an assembled recipe that gets whizzed in a food processor or blender. A mortar and pestle works great too. Like with most cooking I do, I like to get things set out so once the process begins, everything is at the ready.

To a food processor bowl add 2 to 3 cups of fresh basil. Cut a good sized garlic clove in half and add both pieces. Then a half a cup of cubed Parmesan cheese along with a half a cup of unsalted pistachio nuts. Add a few major pinches of salt and a good pinch of pepper. Plus the juice of one lemon. Pulse all a bit. Now add a half of a cup or more if you like the consistency to be looser of the best extra virgin olive oil you have. Pulse again until all combined. I like a thicker pesto plus we add a good amount of EVOO to the top of the bowl when we are saving to use it in the fridge a few days later as the oil helps to lock in the color so it does not turn brown. There you have it. You just made pesto!

Use it on fresh pasta. A dab on crostini for an appetizer. Slather the top of a piece of salmon. Use it on a sandwich in place of mayo. Let your culinary imagination run wild. Enjoy!