The pesto

Pesto originates in the Mediterranean, from the county of Liguria, Italy.

Photo: Flickr.com

Photo: Flickr.com

Pesto base is always the same: salt, olive oil, pine seeds, basil, garlic and cheese; the most commonly used cheeses are parmesan and pecorino. All components are crushed in a stone mortar; in Italian, ‘pestare’ means ‘to crush’. Pesto is as easy to make as the famous aioli, but it can be varied in a thousand ways.

The usual amount of olive oil is 100 ml, to which half a handful of basil, half a head of garlic, a dash of salt, 50 g of grated cheese, 1-2 tablespoons of pine seeds or any other kind of seed (nuts, almonds, pistachios) are added.

Pesto is excellent as a bread dip, thus making a healthy and filling snack much healthier than any chip and dip, and it takes only a few minutes to prepare. It goes well with a light white bubbly wine.

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