So it’s September. Wow. I guess it’s fair to say that we will be saying goodbye to summertime before long. So what will you miss as we say farewell to this most beloved of seasons? Hmmm… One of the things that really gets to me at the close of summer is saying goodbye to my summer herb garden. Makes me sad. I just love my herbs. Yep. Love to cook with them throughout the summer. The ability to walk just outside my door to snip fresh herbs for dinner… priceless! But, quite honestly, I also enjoy just having them nearby. I know; weird. But when I’m watering, I love to just run my fingers through the leaves; the intoxicating fragrance of lavender, rosemary, basil, mint… Love . And then I have a little
friend bee, named “Buzzy”, who likes to hang out with me early in the morning. Along with “Herb” (with an “H”). He is the little (ceramic) pig who lives in the herb garden. OK – Perhaps I sound like a bit of a crazy woman at this point. Hard to argue, really…
But I will tell you who does understand. My friend, Martha. Yep – Martha Stewart. Not only has Martha come up with a delicious way to savor my summer basil well into the winter months; she has done it dairy free! Yes maam… We’re talking pesto without cheese!! And the icing on the cake? Martha says that it actually freezes better than traditional pesto with cheese! Wow, Martha! “You had me at hello…” Thanks!!
yield: Makes 1 3/4 cups
- 1 cup walnuts or pine nuts
- Coarse salt and ground pepper
- 8 cups (4 ounces) lightly packed fresh basil leaves
- 2 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
- 2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1. Step 1
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread nuts evenly on a rimmed baking sheet; toast in oven until golden and fragrant, tossing once, 8 to 10 minutes. Let cool completely.
2. Step 2
Meanwhile, bring 4 cups salted water to a boil; add basil, and submerge with a spoon. Immediately drain in a colander. Rinse with cold water until cool, then pat basil completely dry in paper towels.
3. Step 3
In a food processor, combine nuts, basil, and garlic; season generously with salt and pepper. Process until nuts are finely chopped. With machine running, pour oil in a steady stream through the feed tube; process until smooth. Use immediately, or freeze.
Not a PP (Pesto Person)? No problem – Here are some tips from “theKitchn” on freezing and preserving fresh herbs in olive oil.