An Italian staple, pesto sauce usually begins with a simple mix of ingredients. A little fresh basil, some olive oil, a handful of pine nuts and you’ve got a delicious and quick pasta sauce the whole family will love. With fresh produce all around, there’s no better time than summer to try out some of these vibrant and easy variations on your basic pesto and pasta. Crunched for time? Start with your favorite jarred pesto sauce to whip these dinners up even faster.
1. Basil Pesto
The original! Use this simple recipe as the basis for all your delicious summer pesto dinners. Quick tip – pour pesto into empty ice cube trays and freeze. You’ll have delicious homemade sauce at a moment’s notice.
- 1 ½ – 2 cups fresh basil leaves
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled
- ½ cup pine nuts
- ½ – 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
- ¾ cup freshly grated Pecorino or Parmesan cheese
- Salt and pepper, to taste
In your food processor, pulse the basil leaves, pine nuts, and garlic until coarsely chopped. Drizzle the oil in, while the food processor is running, beginning with ½ cup and adding more, slowly, as needed until smooth. Transfer to a bowl and mix in the cheese. Add salt and pepper to taste. Pour over warm pasta of your choice and enjoy!