I don’t know about you, but I love pesto. Pesto is my boyfriends favourite, my mothers favourite and it is surely one of your favourites too.
There is nothing quite like making your own pesto, the fresh hit of basil and garlic muddled with sharp parmesan and rich nuttiness. Smothering pasta, spread on a cracker and dotted amongst roast veggies… the options are endless! As much as we all love pesto, I do also know it can get really expensive as well as a little time consuming so i have come up with a plan, a sneaky little substitutey plan.
This is a budget pesto recipe. I know it is not everyone’s cup of tea to substitute fancy ingredients with not-so-fancy ingredients, but I can promise you that you will hardly tell the difference and a LOT of people/restaurants do it. And if the question is; to pesto or not to pesto? The answer is always: Pesto!
This pesto makes a full 500ml Consol jar
(as you can see we tucked into ours before I snapped these pictures…I’m sorry…but I blame Darren, but this really does make a full 500ml)
1 tsp crush garlic
3 cups / +- 150g Basil
1 cup (+- 80g) Flaked Almonds
1 cup Grated Parmesan
+- 125ml of half vegetable oil, half olive oil
a squirt of fresh lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste
First, lightly toast your flaked almonds until they are just toasted. Be careful, these suckers burn REALLY quickly. Set these aside to cool.
Next, put your garlic, basil and a bit of your oil in a blender/smoothie machine/hand blender in a small container and blitz. Then plop on your flaked almonds and blend. Stir in the remaining oil, parmesan an optional squirt of lemon juice and then season to taste!
Put that jewel tone delicious goodness into a jar and you’re done!
I used half canola and half olive oil and the Parmesan you find in a plastic tub in Fruit and Veg City. If you feel like you need some more oil, add a bit more until you find the right consistency! You can use this basic pesto recipe to make other pesto’s too, like rocket or coriander!
So simple, so easy! This pesto makes a really quick and easy homemade Christmas gift, paired with some crackers or a loaf of homemade bread.