Receta en español aquí
Basil is an herb originally from Asia but now widely used in the Mediterranean cuisine. Every year in spring I sow a pot of basil and I have fresh leaves all the summer to make sauces or salads.
One of my favourite recipe with basil is the Green pesto. I use this sauce for appetizers, pizzas, pasta, toasts etc … You can even freeze it in ice cube trays to go using it later … I personally prepare a small amount to spend on the day.
Little by little I will give you more ideas for use it.
Ingredients 100 g (this is enough for a pizza for example)
20 to 30 g fresh basil leaves
75 ml or 50 g extra virgin olive oil
1 clove of garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
30 g shredded Parmesan cheese (or other aged cheese)
10 g pine nuts
1/4 tablespoon coarse salt (be careful with salt) plus more to taste
The meaning of blanching is to partly cook something to preserve their flavor and color. If we want this pesto to remain bright green more days, you have to blanch the basil leaves before. However if you are going to use it immediately, you can skip this step.
To blanch: Bring a large pot of water to a boil and prepare a large bowl of ice water.
Put basil leaves in the boiling water. Cook 15 seconds and drain.
Immediately put basil in ice water. Swish around until completely cooled. Drain and, using your hands, squeeze water from basil leaves.
Put all the ingredients in a blender or food processor. Whirl until completely pureed and mixture is uniform. (I used a hand-held blender).It’s very important to use a high quality oil.