Years ago I saw an interesting inscription on the refrigerator. On the door, where we are used to having messages, recipes cut out from magazines or crazy magnets that we bought at a spontaneous moment during the trip, they had only one inscription. He said “think, then open”. I did not understand very well, I did not ask, but it remained etched in my memory. When I open the fridge and I don’t know exactly what I’m looking for, I remember this inscription. Light illuminates the cold interior, and I peer between the shelves to find something. It’s not just hunger, but rather a vague need for something. What do I have in the fridge for times like this? Almost nothing, I hardly buy food in packages anymore, so homemade pesto always saves me.
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Pesto is an excellent spread for bread, I mix it with hot pasta, buckwheat porridge, couscous, I finish soups and sauces with it, I mix it with vinaigrette, I put it on a already baked pizza. Pesto is an essential pot in the refrigerator.
So far we have always only prepared chamomile, as it is the only way I know of to keep a medicinal chamomile out of season. Of course, the most famous is basil pesto, which is also the only truly authentic and original Italian pesto. Pesto alla genovese is traditionally prepared from basil, olive oil, pine nuts, pecorino and garlic. The complete surprise for me was the parsley pesto, which we made this year only because the perch was full of beautiful green foliage. Sometimes a problem arises even though something good is too much. Pesto is an excellent solution, the taste and active ingredients in the oil practically do not change. Preserve the green parts of the plants by chopping them, salting them and pouring quality oil over them while mixing. Everything must be well soaked in oil. If the hub sits in the fridge for a few weeks, it’s not worth saving oil. When I have the hub in mind, the oil may be less.
The parsley pesto encouraged me to put most coriander seeds in small jars.
Lovers of this aromatic herb know that it blooms very quickly, no need to wait.
I now have a solution in the fridge for all those occasions of sudden hunger pangs or a lack of culinary imagination. The rest of the cilantro has already sprouted a good meter and is flowering very well. It is visited by bees, bumblebees and that’s good too.
The solution to all occasions of sudden hunger!
- a large bunch of fresh cilantro
- 200ml olive oil
- a handful of cashew nuts (or pine nuts, almonds)
1. Finely chop or grind the nuts separately. A coffee grinder is useful, which should of course be without coffee.
2. Clean the cilantro. Thin, soft rods can fit into the hub, harder ones that you can’t break would grind badly.
3. Press cilantro, oil, salt and peanuts in a blender. Salt to taste, no need to overdo it with salt. Blend to desired density, add oil if necessary. In principle, the pesto should be smooth, but not cream-like, with a more grainy structure. Instead, blend several times and stop in between so the blades don’t overheat. If possible, set the mixer to lower revolutions. It may be necessary to press the hub onto the blades in the meantime.
4. Load the hub into mini glass jars with lids two inches below the rim. Drizzle them with oil so that at least an inch remains from the edge. The hub increases in volume over time. It is best to fill several small jars to open them on the spot. If you’re taking pesto from a larger pot, mash up what’s left and pour a thin layer of oil over it. Store in the refrigerator or at least in a cool, dark place.