Cinque Terre,  Local Life

Italian food: The Original Recipe for Pesto

Talking about Italian food, this is the spearhead of Ligurian cuisine and nobody does it as well as we do. Let me share with you our original (and local) Italian recipe for Pesto…

Why? Well, one of the most satisfying activities to do at home is probably cooking, and if you are just a bit like me in those days you surely want to try doing something different from your usual dishes.

The italian recipe for Pesto: Ingredients

  • 50g basil leaves;
  • 1 garlic clove;
  • 20g pine nuts;
  • 3 nuts;
  • Extra-virgin oil;
  • Salt (as much as you want, around 2 pinches)
  • 60g Parmigiano Reggiano DOP (parmesan)
  • Additional: 20g of pecorino.
  • recipe for 4 people, 20 mins

Before Starting

If you are going to use a mortar to produce your Pesto, you should know how to use it:

You have to press against the sides of the mortar with the pestle twisting it from left to right AND in the meantime, you have to keep turning the mortar in the opposite sense ( taking it by the four extremities it should have on its angles).

Are you ready?

Wash the basil leaves in a small bowl with water and let them dry (do not pat dry well with paper towels). Meanwhile, peel the garlic and put it in the mortar together with salt. Then add the basil leaves and start working with the pestle pressing and rotating as I told you.

Keep going..

When your leaves are almost ground, add the nuts and the pine nuts. Continue to work mashing the ingredients and in the meantime gradually add the cheese.

When you will have obtained a homogeneous sauce add the oil and keep mixing for a little bit.

Congrats! You did it!

Tips by Locals:

– If you do not have the mortar or something with the same function to use, it’s okay for you to use a blender. Don’t worry if the pesto will not be bright green: the metal of the blades makes basil leaves darker! Tip: if you leave the blades in your fridge for 30 mins or more before starting, the pesto will be more green.

– Pecorino and nuts are additional ingredients, for example, I don’t use pecorino but just parmesan.

– To do the pesto recipe just for two people you can basically halve the doses I gave you.

– Conservation: you can leave it inside your fridge in an airtight container for 2-3 days OR if you want, you can freeze it. I usually freeze it in small portions using plastic cups. A cup corresponds to a sauce for 2 people.

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