The classic basil pesto is one of my favourite sauces for pasta. Or is is classed as a condiment? Or a topping. No matter how you define it, this classic Italian sauce is a quick and healthy recipe that is sure to make your taste buds happy!
In this weeks healthy recipe we turn to Stuart, the owner of Sen5es, to provide us with a recipe from his Chef days. Stuart was a professional chef for 16 years before starting Sen5es! So he knows a thing or two!
This recipe is perfect because it's quick and simple. It takes no time to make and it's healthy. It can be made in advance and stored in the fridge. Then simply use when needed!
Stuart's homemade pesto recipe
This is one of my favourite quick and easy recipes. It's great for adding to pasta dishes, sandwiches and cheese on toast! I've been working on this recipe on and off for a while and I've found the use of two different oils makes a huge difference to the taste.
60ml Oil mix. Half olive oil and half vegetable oil
1 large garlic clove
100g Pine nuts
50g Parmesan cheese
Salt and Pepper to taste
A pestle and mortar or a food processor
A couple of glass jars (like our 125ml round jar)
A chopping board and a knife
Peel the garlic and use the pestle and mortar to grind it up.
Roughly tare the basil up in to small pieces. Don't forget you can include the storks for extra flavour. Add it to the garlic along with a pinch of salt and grind to a paste.
Add the pine nuts (which can be very lightly toasted first) to the mixture and grind again.
Stir in half the freshly grated Parmesan.
Add some olive oil to the mix. Drizzle in enough to bind the sauce and get it to a classic pesto consistency.
Add the remaining parmesan and season to taste.
Then simply jar it up and keep in the fridge until you are ready to use it.
Alternatively instead of using a pestle and mortar you can use a food processor instead.
Stuart's top tip!
Don't forget to sterlise your jars before you fill them. This will help keep your freshly made pesto last for longer.
This recipe should last about 2 weeks in the fridge!
What else can you use pesto for?
Pesto isn't just for pasta! It can be used in all sorts of ways to help keep your meals interesting. Below are our top five ways to use pesto!
In a pasta dish. Ok, I know I said it isn't just for pasta. But pasta is definitely the top use for pesto!
As a dip for appetisers! First mix it with a little greek youghurt, sour cream or cream cheese. Then it could be used just for crisps or why not try chicken wings?
As a spread in sandwiches. Pesto goes great with chicken! Try a chicken, tomato, lettuce and pesto sandwich
You can make a great salad dressing using pesto. Mix with either olive oil or mayonnaise to create a salad dressing.
As a sauce or garnish. As i said earlier pesto goes great with chicken. Why not stuff a chicken breast with pesto, wrap in bacon and then cook it in the oven? It can also go great with grilled salmon or sea bass.
Thank you for tuning in to our latest healthy recipe! Will you be trying this one at home? Maybe with your kids? We'd love to see if you do. Just tag is in any pictures on social media!
What would you like to see next in this series? Stuart has a vast back catalogue of recipes and ideas so we better come up with some more challenges for him. Comment below!
All the best
The team at Sen5es