Recipe #23: Almond and basil pesto

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Yesterday I went round for some tea and scones at Pennie’s house, a good friend and adopted Mum. She’s been kitting out her kitchen with the latest gadgets and as a result, had a few bits and bobs to give away – I was the lucky (and very excited) recipient. I came home from Pennie’s house with a food processor, an old style pressure cooker, some old-style weighing scales with a lovely metal bowl, some utensils and baking trays AND a dyson vacuum cleaner.

After re-arranging our kitchen to find suitable homes for each item, I set to work on making my first dish with my first ever food processor; almond and basil pesto.

Just after Christmas I was watching Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals, on which he made a delicious looking pesto with almond instead of pesto. In my frugality and knowing that almonds can be purchased for half the price of pine nuts, I opted for the former. I’m going to be honest with you, my pesto was yummy, but making it wasn’t plain sailing. I followed a few recipes and found that my pesto was too dry, so I added some water. I also added in extra salt to taste as it seemed to be missing something without. The result of my trail and error pesto was a lovely pasta and pesto dish served with roasted tomatoes, peppers and a sprinkling of extra parmesan.

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I made a huge portion of pesto so I’ve frozen the surplus into an ice cube tray so I can pop out my pesto cubes use them when I want them. Pennie sent me a link to this website, which has loads of ideas about how I might use up the rest of my pesto.

Here’s how to make it. You’ll need:

1 clove of garlic
1 handful of basil leaves
2 handfuls of almonds
2 tspns of grated parmesan  
1/2 tspn salt
A big glug of olive oil
Water

Method:

  1. Add your almonds, basil, garlic, parmesan and salt into a food processor and whizz until it’s all finely chopped and blended together. 
  2. Pour in your oil, blitz again and have a taste. You may wish to add more garlic, salt or even some pepper or parsley at this stage. If it’s anything like mine, it will be quite dry. Add in a tablespoon of water at a time and blitz until you have the consistency you require. (Mine was packed full of flavour so I went for a runnier consistency, you may prefer yours to be thicker).
  3. Serve however you like – it’s great as a pasta sauce, over chicken, fish of lamb and mixed into mashed potato.
  4. Enjoy!

I love pesto so much and I’m so happy I can make it myself at home. What’s your favourite pesto combination?

Until tomorrow

Hayley Jayne xx

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6 Responses to “Recipe #23: Almond and basil pesto”

  1. judilyn

    Must try this! I have some pine nuts; it’s the basil that is so expensive here (AZ, USA). Love the other uses shown at your referenced site. Lots of good ideas.

    Reply
  2. Tanya

    Sounds delicious, I will have to give it a try as I love anything basically with almonds in it

    Reply

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