Ligurian basil sauce

Ligurian basil sauce

Pesto alla genovese

By
From
Vegetables
Serves
4
Photographer
Laura Edwards

The word ‘pesto’ is closely connected to Genoa in Liguria (and vice versa!). This pasta sauce, consisting primarily of basil, is famous all over the world, and now also gives its name to sauces which are similar, but do not contain basil at all. In Liguria there are two versions of the sauce: one containing junket, which makes it milder, and the other simply oil. Pesto can also be used as a spread for crostini and bruschetta; it can be used with gnocchi instead of pasta; and you can also add a spoonful to a soup like minestrone for additional flavour.

Surplus home-made pesto can be frozen in ice-cube trays for future use.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
100g fresh basil leaves
2 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
5-10g coarse sea salt
40g pine nuts
40g parmesan, freshly grated
100ml extra virgin olive oil, or as required

Method

  1. Put the basil leaves, garlic and the sea salt, which will serve as a grinder, into a large mortar. Work the pestle to reduce the ingredients to a pulp. Add the pine nuts, which will give a delicate resinous taste, and continue to pound to a fine pulp.
  2. Now add the Parmesan and, still continuing to pound, add enough olive oil to obtain a smooth sauce.
Tags:
Carluccio
vegetables
vegetarian
Italian
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