I was never a big fan of pesto until I went on holiday to Lucca 4 years ago.  My friends and I had rented a cottage for a week up in the mountains, so en route we had done a massive food shop and a couple of jars of pesto had been thrown into the trolley.

I always opt to make things from scratch but had I not known, I would have thought this pesto was made fresh that evening and not come from a jar.  The olive oil that had been used was sensational!!! For thereon in I became a lover of pesto and began making my own.

Why had I never made my own before??  It is SO easy and a brilliant way to use up basil once it starts to bruise and droop.  You can also use it in so many ways – the obvious one being a sauce for hot or cold pasta (you can also add some sundried tomatoes for a burst of colour and flavour), a dressing for a salad, or add some breadcrumbs and you can slap it on some chicken or some lamb!  Here’s how to make it.

The prep. part –  makes a small jar of the glorious stuff

  • 20g/handful of basil, you can use the stems too.
  • 50g pine nuts.
  • 90ml extra virgin rapeseed oil (I prefer to use rapeseed oil instead of olive oil but either work well).
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled.
  • 40g of pecorino romano.

The cooking/assembling part

  • No cooking needed. Throw all the ingredients into a blender, bar the oil. Turn on the blender and bit by bit add the oil. Sometimes you may not need to use all the oil.



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