I always buy fresh herbs for recipes, but end up throwing most of them out. Occasionally I buy herbs in pots, but me and plants do not go together, My father over the years has given me plants, in hope that I will look after them, but because they don’t talk and tell me they’re thirsty, all of them have hit the dust. Sorry Dad. Most people would be delighted to be given a beautiful orchid. Not me. I just know how it’s going to end, and it won’t be pretty.
I did however buy a basil plant because there weren’t any little packets available in the supermarket. I didn’t end up making the dish I had planned, or did I just forget to garnish something (something I’ve done too many times when we’ve had friends over for dinner!) – I can’t remember. Anyway, I still had the basil plant. I really looked after it, feeding it regularly with sparkling water (which was just due to convenience initially; there was a half used bottle in the kitchen and it poured well!). Basil (by this time, I was forming a bond) really liked the water and I could almost sense its delight every time I watered it. The leaves became large and lush and I knew that I was going to have to use its harvest pretty soon. Hmm, what should I make? Pesto, of course!
Pesto– makes 125ml
25g Pine nuts
40g Basil leaves
25g Grated Parmesan
75ml olive oil
1 garlic clove
- Cook the pine nuts in a small pan over a low heat until golden. Give the pan a good shake from time to time, and don’t take your eye off the ball! Burnt pine nuts aren’t nice.
- Pop the basil, Parmesan, garlic in a food processor.
- Add the roasted pine nuts and blend.
- Add the olive oil and blend again.
- It’s that simple.