Girragirra Green Living

Basil Pesto

a bowl of basil leaves to tuen into pesto


It’s that time of year to jump in and make pesto! Basil is abundant… but thinking about setting seed and signing off. Did you know you can encourage it to keep on growing for a little while longer by pruning off the flower heads?

And why not store some of that abundance as pesto? As Stephanie Alexander tells us in her seminal book ,The Cook’s Companion, ” pesto has a powerful flavour that works best when combined with a much larger mass of something delicate and starchy”

It’s totally delicious stirred into hot pasta (maybe thin with a spoonful of the pasta water first), potato gnocchi or served alongside lamb , or dabbed onto a cheese toasty… so many ways to use and so easy to make.

You need:

1 packed cup of basil leaves

1/2 cup of the best olive oil you can buy – we use the local Gibson Grove oil

30g pine nuts

2 cloves of garlic, crushed


60g freshly grated parmesan


  1. Blend basil, oil, pine nuts and salt until smooth – you can do this with a mortar and pestle if you don’t have a blender or food processor
  2. Scrape into a bowl and stir in the cheese
  3. Store covered with a film of olive oil in a clean jar


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