Pesto For The Freezer



Well, it's that time again! The herbs in our garden are growing in abundance and, it's time to think about how we are going to preserve those herbs for winter's use. Freezer Pesto is a great way to make use of the basil that's in our gardens, at farmers' markets, and at groceries.

Here's a quick and easy way to have fresh pesto all year long! Notice there's not the usual amount (1 cup) of olive oil in this recipe. You can always add more olive oil after thawing the pesto, depending upon what you are using it for.

And notice I'm using a food processor for the whole process of chopping, mincing, etc. It makes quick work of what used to be a laborious task! One more tip about basil - it is cold sensitive so if you pick some from your garden, simply put it in a glass of water or vase at room temperature, not in the frig, where it could turn black.

And you might get lucky - sometimes basil will even root this way!

Large Batch:

a.. 1 to 1/2 teaspoons garlic, minced
a.. 1/4 cup pine nuts (buy these in the produce section of Krogers)
a..

1/2 to 1 stick unsalted butter (optional but good)
a.. 1/2 cup parsley leaves
a.. 4 cups basil leaves, packed
a..

1-1/2 cups Parmesan cheese or to taste
a.. 1/2 to 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Small Batch:

a.. Simply divide recipe in half

With motor running, add garlic and nuts. Now add butter and process until blended.

Add parsley and basil and pulse until chopped finely. Add cheese and blend again. Slowly add olive oil and process until well blended.



To store: Either fill ice cube tray sections, or use a small scoop or tablespoon and scoop out portions on a foil/waxed paper lined/permanent baking mat lined cookie sheet. Freeze until hard and place in freezer-safe containers. Use in pastas, pizzas, soups, stews, sandwiches, appetizers - you name it - pesto is good on just about anything!

To make "Pistou" - Leave the pine nuts out.

Variations: Use walnuts instead of pine nuts