Friday, August 17, 2012

HOMEMADE PESTO

My time behind the sewing machine, or even being able to do some hand sewing has been minimal BUT thanks to a kind and generous client (from my day time job), I have been inundated with fresh produce.  My motto:  Nothing goes to waste! 
 This year and per my request, she provided me with just a few heads of cabbage.  As last year, I was up to my elbows in cabbage and choose to make sauerkraut.  This year, I wanted to keep it to a minimum so I just made some coleslaw, and cabbage chicken salad for dinners.  
 She gave me a large bin of overgrown cucumbers for relish, about 20lbs. of tomatoes for sauce, numerous kinds of peppers (i.e. bell, Anaheim, jalapeno), onions, garlic and
basil!

So, this past weekend, I tackled this bountiful harvest!

Thanks to my Cuisinart, I cranked out a few batches of pesto....





CLASSIC FRESH PESTO

3 cups loosely packed fresh basil leaves (washed and drained well)
3 large cloves of garlic
1/2 cup pecans (pine nuts or walnuts can be substituted)
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon fresh oregano (or 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano can be substituted)
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
salt to taste

Combine all ingredients in a food processor or blender, adding enough olive oil (i.e. average 1/4 - 1/2 cup) to make a thick smooth sauce.  Add salt to taste.

Refrigerate up to one week; or package in individual containers (as I did) and freeze up to one year.


Over the weekend, I also made a batch of dill pickle relish, tomato sauce and pepper jelly.  I'll have to blog about all my preserving in future postings.  In the mean time, my client delivered another bushel of tomatoes, cucumbers (for pickles) and green beans.  Looks like I have to get busy!

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