There are few culinary pleasures in life as fragrantly intoxicating as freshly made pesto, the Genovese-originated mixture of basil, pine nuts, olive oil, garlic, and cheese that – when made well – tastes even better than the promise of its sweet, nutty aroma. Though we’re like any busy , money-minded family and make ours in a food processor, we suggest trying it at least once by combining the ingredients in a mortar and pestle. Pesto comes from the Italian word pestare – to stomp – and when you grind everything by hand, you’re squeezing out and blending oils and flavors in a way that produces something even more wonderfully rustic, aromatic, and possibly more delicious. As for pasta pairings, we suggest something with grooves that can trap the pesto, like fusilli or penne rigate.
Also try it in Pesto Lasagne for a lighter version of the classic.
Find this and other Super Tuscan recipes in our book!