Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Purple Pesto Pasta

Is there anything more fabulous than the taste of fresh-picked basil in the summer? I love it and fortunately for me, my parents planted way too much in their backyard garden. I, of course, offered to help take some off their hands ;)

This year, in addition to the traditional green basil, my parents also planted purple basil. It's amazing! I can't really taste a difference between the green and purple basil but I love the rich, vibrant color of the purple leaves. 

I recently picked a ton of basil and decided to whip up a batch of pesto. My recipe is from a French cooking class I took a few years back and it never fails. Try this today for a delicious summer treat!

Green leaves for garnish!

Purple Basil Pesto

2 cups fresh-picked purple basil (can substitute with green basil)
3-4 medium cloves garlic
1/3 cup pine nuts 
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
Salt to taste

Add basil and garlic to a food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Add pine nuts and pulse to combine. Slowly add olive oil to the mixture while continuing to pulse. Finally, add the cheese (and salt if desired) and mix to desired consistency. 

I like serving pesto on top of pasta but you can also use it to top meat, soup, salad, as a sandwich spread or sauce for pizza. My favorite combo: Pasta + Pesto + Roasted Tomatoes + Sprinkle of Parmesan Cheese

I got a bit lazy and didn't make roasted tomatoes this time, but they are super easy - just add a pint of grape or cherry tomatoes to a baking dish and coat with olive oil, salt and pepper. Roast for 30 minutes at 350 degrees. And that's it!

Since the basil I picked made only a small dent in my parents' crop, tell me:

  • What is your favorite way to use basil?
  • Am I forgetting any ways to eat pesto?

I hope you're all having a delicious start to the week :)

- ST


  1. Um, YUM. This sounds amazing. I've never used it this way, but try basil in a smoothie with strawberries and spinach. I've heard it's incredible that way! Or for another smoothie combo - frozen watermelon / basil / tequila :)

    1. Adding to a smoothie is an interesting idea - I never would have thought of that so thanks :)