Summer weather to me = spending less time in the kitchen. Well, maybe not less time in the kitchen, but definitely not making really hot & elaborate meals that stick to your insides.
That does not mean that I want to skimp on flavor and taste. I want to be able to capture the flavors of the season while still keeping true to my mantra — cooking should be fun and a way to destress….the perfect form of self care.
Enter pesto season. I love pestos because they can literally be created out of your favorite greens, nuts, cheeses, and spices. The only thing you need is a food processor and you are well on your way to the perfect summer meal accompaniment.
Pesto goes well with pasta, chicken, steak, on salads, and even as a spread for pizza, crostini, etc. The possibilities are endless. So was my excitement to make my first pesto of the summer season!! <3
Pecorino & Parmesan Pesto
- 3 c. fresh basil leaves, washed and stripped from stems
- 1/4 c. pine nuts, lightly toasted on the stove top*
- 3 cloves of garlic, peeled & smashed
- 1/4 – 1/2 c. olive oil, depending on how much you need i.e. depending on how thick you want your pesto
- 1/2 tsp. black pepper
- 1/4 tsp. Kosher salt
- 1/8 tsp. red pepper flakes (optional)
- juice of 1/2 lemon
- 1/4 c. finely grated Pecorino Romano cheese
- 1/4 c. finely grated Parmesan cheese
~ In a large food processor, pulse together the basil leaves (inhaaaaallllleeeee the gorgeous smell of those leaves first….isn’t that smell the best?!), the pine nuts, and the garlic.
*If you feel inclined to toast the pine nuts, it will produce a nuttier flavor. Warm a small skillet on the stove top and toast the nuts for 5-7 minutes. Make sure they don’t burn!
~ The consistency of the basil, nuts, and garlic will be mostly dry. Slowly drizzle in olive oil through the top of the food processor. This creates the emulsion that is crucial to a perfect pesto. I’d recommend making the pesto a little bit thinner than you might like because the cheese will thicken it.
~ Add the spices and lemon juice; pulse a few more times.
~ Remove bowl from base. Stir in the cheeses.
~ Serve as you like it 🙂 🙂 This was for pasta and chicken night! <3